Kwesi Appiah: Ghana Can Cope Despite Pitch Problems

Ghana coach Kwesi Appiah feels his players will cope with the pitch at the Mbombela Stadium when they play Burkina Faso in Wednesday's Africa Cup of Nations semi-finals. The Black Stars enjoyed a good surface in Port Elizabeth but will only have feel of the sand-covered surface in Nelspruit on the day of the match. Ghana were informed by tournament organisers that they could not use the pitch for training ahead of the last four game. “Unfortunately, we’ve been informed that we cannot have our training session at the main pitch,” Kwesi Appiah told the press at his pre-match conference on Tuesday Nelspruit. “It would have been best if we could have just a training session but it’s not possible. We need to take our minds off the pitch situation and focus on how to achieve the task ahead of us. The pitch issue is something that all the players are aware of but they’ve put it behind. They will try to do their best no matter how the pitch is.” The Stallions have already played all four of their matches at the tournament on the pitch with their coach Paul Put suggesting that, that will favour his side more than Ghana in the semi-final clash. But Appiah believes fine tuning the minds of his players for the task ahead if the most important thing. “Even though they have had the opportunity in playing there, the most important thing is psyching yourself up that you’ve got no choices and we just need to go out there and compete, whether good or bad,” he said. “I normally don’t believe in the idea of a good pitch or a bad pitch. We are not alone; we are playing with another team. “When we get to the pitch, they[players] would just go and walk around the pitch. We are all professionals. We have pitches which are much worse and we should be fine with it.” Both sides are meeting in their first ever semi-final clash at the African competition.