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Black Stars gets ready for Mauritius tomorrow as Partey set for debut


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Ghana’s Black Stars look poised to book their place at next year’s Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Gabon as they play their group opponents Mauritius at the Stade George V on Sunday.

The four-time African champions (Ghana) need just a point to ensure qualification and are in no mood to allow their hosts to stand in their way to qualify on Sunday in a match that Coach Avram Grant is expected to hand Atletico Madrid’s Thomas Partey his debut international appearance.

Mauritius, who lost 1-7 to the Stars in the first round fixture in Accra, are not taking Sunday’s game lightly as their coach, Joe Tshupula, has named a squad comprising, Kevin Jean-Louis, Michael Bosqui, Damien Balisson, Kevin Godon, Fabian Pithia, Andy Patate and Stephen Nabab, to face the Ghanaians as the third-placed island state still fancy qualifying for the Nations Cup from Group H.

Even though the Stars will miss the services of their injured captain, Asamoah Gyan, Coach Avram Grant expects in-from Andre Dede Ayew to provide the inspiration for his team-mates, such as old guards Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu, Harrison Afful, Afriyie Acquah, Mubarak Wakasu, Daniel Amartey, John Boye and new boy Patrick Twumasi, to ensure victory and qualification.

Meanwhile, Atletico’s Partey has justified his maiden call-up to the national team and says he is looking forward to his international debut and eventually work his way to secure a regular place in the team reports Bernard Neequaye.

After painfully losing the UEFA Champions League to Real Madrid last Saturday, Partey turned his focus on the national team when he trained with the Stars for the first time last Tuesday.

He told the Graphic Sports after the team’s workout at the Accra Stadium that he had worked hard to merit his inclusion in the team.

“I have really worked hard to deserve this call up. As you know, I travelled out of the country to Europe to make sure I represent my country at one stage of my career.

“I am very glad for the opportunity and I believe I will offer my best when I wear the national jersey to play for my motherland,” Partey added.

The 23-year-old midfielder also noted that he was ready to learn from his teammates who had spent lot of years with the Stars and hoped he settled into the team as quickly as possible.”