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2023 U-23 AfconQ: Kwame Poku, 23 others make Black Meteors squad for Ethiopia/Algeria decider

Black Meteors coach Ibrahim Tanko has named a squad of twenty-four (24) players ahead of Ghana’s final quest to qualify for the 2023 Under-23 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) in Morocco.

The invited players are to report to the camp at the Ghanaman Soccer Centre of Excellence, Prampram by 2 pm on Monday, February 27.

Tanko retained 17 players from his last squad that eliminated Mozambique while inviting 7 fresh new faces – Augustine Agyapong, Eric Osei Bonsu, Seth Kwadwo, Emmanuel Appau, England-based Kwame Poku, Issah Kuka and Ghana Premier League leading scorer Mezack Afriyie.

Kwame Afriyie Poku: Ghana name player from English fourth-tier for CRUCIAL qualifiers

The Black Meteors were supposed to battle DR Congo in March for a ticket to the U-23 Afcon but the latter got kicked out of the qualifiers after the Confederation of African Football (Caf) admitted to a huge blunder for allowing them participation when they were supposed to be serving a two-tournament ban for fielding an overage player during the qualifiers for the last edition in 2019.

Caf has decided that Ethiopia and Algeria who lost to the DRC in the first and second qualifying rounds should face off with the aggregate winner advancing to face Ghana later next month.

The 2023 Under-23 Afcon, scheduled for November 2 to 26 in Morocco, will serve as a qualifying tournament for football at the 2024 Paris Olympics. Africa has three automatic slots with the fourth-placed team getting a playoff chance against an opponent from Asia.

Coach Tanko’s squad of 24 players:

Goalkeepers (3):

Danlad Ibrahim (Asante Kotoko), Williams Essu (Legon Cities), Aziz Dari Haruna (Bechem United)

Defenders (7):

Augustine Randolf (Karela United), Augustine Agyapong (Asante Kotoko), Aaron Essel (Bechem United), Eric Osei Bonsu (Legon Cities), David Oppong Afrane (King Faisal), Samuel Ashie Quaye (Great Olympics), Eugene Frimpong (Benab FC)

Midfielders (10):

Dominic Nsobila (Accra Lions), Abass Samari Salifu (Accra Lions), Clinton Duodo (Bechem United), Sylvester Simba (Dreams FC), Seidu Suraj (Hearts of Oak), Dede Ishmael (Dreams FC), Seth Kwadwo (Bechem United), Emmanuel Appau (Bibiani GoldStars), Kwame Poku (Peterborough United), Emmanuel Adjei (Attram De Visser)

Strikers (4):

Mezack Afriyie (Berekum Chelsea), Yahaya Mohammed (Tamale City), Issah Kuka (Real Tamale United), Razak Yusif (Great Olympics)

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