World Cup: Ghana know it's an uphill road to qualifying out of Group G after draw vs. Germany
We're still in it.
It's hope that Ghana are latching onto after Saturday's hard-fought 2-2 draw with Germany in Group G action. But getting out of the Group of Death with just one point from two games is going to be an uphill climb.
"We don't know what's going to happen," said goal-scorer and captain Asamoah Gyan in a flash zone interview. "I think for what we showed today we still believe in ourselves and we can still win the next game."
"It's not going to be easy," said a more realistic head coach James Kwesi Appiah in his post-game press conference. "It's really difficult to predict at the moment. But you never know. It could be possible."
However, Gyan had a reason to be enthusiastic. The Black Stars did show tactical poise in the first half, strong character in coming back from a goal down in the second and speedy transition play that gave problems to the high-powered Germans in a see-saw final 45 minutes.
"It was really a good competitive game," commented Appiah, who was still being questioned about the opening US loss in his press conference. "We all know Germany is the second best in the whole world and playing against them is always going to be a very difficult game.
"We did our best. We had some opportunities that we could have maybe extended the goals. But unfortunately playing against such a big team, if you don't take your chances we can always face problems."
Appiah pointed out that Germany are a more dangerous team in the final third than the USA, but in the end it's the Germans' other weapon that did Ghana in: set pieces.
A 71st-minute goal by German second-half substitute Miroslav Klose was the final salvo in an explosive second half that saw the teams finish deadlocked at 2-2. It came on a corner kick that was flicked to the back post, where Klose was first to react.
"Our boys did their best in defending most of the corner kicks they had, but it's unfortunate that we conceded one goal out of it," Appiah said. "When you're defending against tall players, it's always difficult and unfortunately you know Ghanaians are not born that tall. So maybe in the future we'll try to get taller players."
The near future, however, is Portugal on June 26 and Ghana will be in a must-win situation in their group finale, which they'll face without influential central midfielder Sulley Muntari due to suspension. But they'll also need other results to go their way, something which hasn't occurred thus far in the tournament.
"The confidence level in this tournament is great to me," Appiah said about his young team. "It's unfortunate to me that the two games we played we could have proven that with a win, but on a long-term basis for the future, Ghana can produce a very good team."