Ghana’s head coach, Chris Hughton, has addressed the recent challenges faced by Osman Bukari ahead of the Black Stars’ crucial final group match against Mozambique at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.
During the second group game against Egypt, Bukari, who plays for Red Star Belgrade, made a regrettable back pass that resulted in Egypt’s equalizer on Thursday night.
In anticipation of the must-win match against Mozambique, Hughton openly discussed the issue, stating, “I’ve spoken to Bukari. What happened in the last game is not a reflection of the player’s quality because he is a great player and also a great individual. Football is an emotional game, and sometimes these things are necessary.”
Ghana’s campaign began with a 2-1 defeat to Cape Verde, where a mistake by Mohammed Salisu led to a poor goal in stoppage time. In the second game against Egypt, despite fantastic goals from Mohammed Kudus, Ghana conceded two mistakes that allowed the record winners to equalize, resulting in a 2-2 draw.
With just one point from two games, the Black Stars currently stand in third place in Group B. To secure a spot in the round of 16, they must emerge victorious in the upcoming match against Mozambique.
Hughton’s emphasis on the player’s overall quality and individual character reflects his understanding of the emotional nature of football. Acknowledging the ups and downs in the sport, he aims to motivate the team for success in their crucial final group encounter. The coach’s confidence in Bukari’s abilities signals a strategic approach to boost the team’s morale as they strive to progress in the t ournament.