Ghana coach Kwesi Appiah has dropped big names Asamoah Gyan, Kwadwo Asamoah and Baba Rahman from his starting line up to face Benin in their opening 2019 Africa Cup of Nations match while naming three debutantes Lumor Agbeyenu, Kasim Nuhu and Thomas Agyepong for Tuesday’s game.
The country’s all-time top scorer Asamoah Gyan who is considered very sharp despite his injury problems but Jordan Ayew has been chosen ahead of him.
The decision to leave out the top players comes as a shock as it is not known if the coach is preserving his top players for the subsequent tough matches in the group.
Inter Milan versatile defender Kwadwo Asamoah and the country’s all-time top scorer Asamoah Gyan will start from the bench.
The trio will be supported by experienced stars like Jordan Ayew who leads the attack with his brother and team captain Andre supporting him up front.
Appiah has chosen Spain-based duo Mubarak Wakaso and Thomas Partey in the middle of the park.
Maritzburg United No.1 Richard Ofori has maintained his place between the sticks with Andy Yiadom as right back.
Agbeyenu starts as left back ahead of Baba Rahman and the centre-back pair will be John Boye and Kasim Nuhu.
In-form winger Agyepong gets to start despite playing just nine matches on loan at Hibernian in the Scottish Premier League.
Also on the wings will be Christian Atsu who comes into the tournament after an impressive season with Newcastle United in the English Premier League.
The match will be played at the Ismailia Stadium at 20:00 GMT after the Group opener between Cameroon and Guinea Bissau.
Ghana’s starting XI to face Benin:
Richard Ofori- Andy Yiadom, Lumor Agbeyenu, John Boye, Kasim Nuhu- Mubarak Wakaso, Thomas Partey, Thomas Agyepong, Christian Atsu, Andre Ayew-Jordan.