2014 African Nations Championship - West African giants Ghana and Nigeria will revive their rivalry today in the semi-final of the 2014 African Nations Championship. But this showdown will be without high-profile foreign-based players and rather restricted to players in the domestic leagues as the tournament rules dictates.
The home-based Super Eagles, making their tournament debut, are slightly on top of their opponents who have been far from impressive. Stephen Keshi's side pitched themselves for the title after a miraculous comeback in the 4-3 win over Morocco in the quarter-final.They rallied from three goals down to beat the Atlas Lions. Nigeria have so far scored 12 goals and conceded eight.
Striker Gbolahan Salami is racing against time to be fit for the titanic clash due to a thigh injury. Right-back Solomon Kwambe is now available for selection after serving a one-match ban. For Ghana, goal scoring has been a problem after raking in four goals but the 2009 runners-up have strongest defence having conceded just a single goal. "Our attack has been such that we only manage one goal per match but we have been defending very well. That for me is a sign of a team that is progressing and I don't think it is a bad thing to defend very well," Head coach Maxwell Konadu said.
"It is also important to score goals but in cases when you score one goal in a match and manage to defend it, that means you will win."
Trio- Michael Akuffo, Abeiku Ainooson and Kwabena Adusei-who picked up knocks in the quarter-final clash against DR Congo are now available for selection. Right-back Godfred Saka, who picked up a foot injury in the second Group C match against Libya, is now ready. Nigeria have not beaten Ghana since 2006 when they nicked a 1-0 win in the Group stage of the Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt.
By Jacob Ajom