2019 AFCON qualifiers: Kwadwo Asamoah to start from the bench against Kenya

Author: Rosalind K. Amoh
Kwadwo Asamoah will start from the bench for Stars against Kenya
Kwadwo Asamoah will start from the bench for Stars against Kenya

Midfielder Kwadwo Asamoah will mark his return to the Black Stars after four years, from the bench, as he has been left out of Kwesi Appiah's starting line up against Kenya in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers in Nairobi on Saturday afternoon.

Asamoah who now  plays for Inter Milan, as well as striker Raphael Dwamena and right-full back Harrison Afful, who were all tipped to be in the starting XI in the cagey game against the Harambee Stars, have all been dropped.

Since Asamoah reported for duty, there has been great anticipation to have him in the starting role, given his experience and form. However, Coach Appiah, may have decided to keep him on the bench and bring him on when the going gets tougher than expected.

Majeed Waris named to lead the Stars' attack against Kenya

 In Dwamena's place, Majeed Waris who is also making a return to the Stars, will lead the attack with more men deployed in midfield.

Though Dwamena has proved his mettle in recent times, helping the Stars, particularly in the last three games played, Coach Appiah may have given the Nantes player, Warris the starting role due to  his strategy to play just one out and out striker.

Also to start from the bench is late call up, Rashid Sumaila who was tipped to pair Daniel Amartey in the heart of the defence. That role, by the team list, has been given to Nicholas Opoku.

Reading's Andy Yiadom and Dan Opare will play as full backs, with the former at the right and the latter at the left.

Maritzburg United goalkeeper Richard Ofori will keep his place between the sticks with Reading defender Andy Yiadom playing at right back while Dan Opare will operate at left back.

Afriyie Acquah, Ebenezer Ofori,Christian Atsu and Edwin Gyasi will be in midfield and on the flanks, with Partey supporting Waris just infront of the midfielders.

Thomas Partey will play behind striker Abdul Majeed Waris.

Against Kenya, Coach Appiah has hinted he will adopt a not too familiar 4-2-3-1 formation keeping his strategy more defensive, nonetheless, keen on getting goals.The formation emphasises on tightening up the midfield.

From the formation, Partey, Gyasi and Atsu will be expected to help the defensive midfielders when there is the need for the Stars to defend, but they quickly reserve to their attacking role and provide the support for the  Waris, once they are on the offensive.

Daniel Amartey captains the Stars against Kenya

Amartey will captain the team for this match, taking over from Partey who has worn the armband in the last three matches the Stars have played in.

The Black Stars line up against Kenya (with shirt Nos):

1. Richard Ofori 12. Andy Yiadom 4. Dan Opare 3. Nicholas Opoku 18. Daniel Amartey 6. Afriyie Acquah 8. Ebenezer Ofori 7. Christian Atsu 14. Edwin Gyasi 5. Thomas Partey 9. Majeed Waris

Subs: Lawrence Ati, Harrison Afful, Kwadwo Asamoah, Isaac Sackey, William Owusu, Raphael Dwamena and Rashid Sumaila.