Derek Boateng expects a tough game

Ukraine-based midfielder Derek Boateng tells they are ready and poised for action against Malawi in this weekend?s 2013 Orange Africa Cup of Nations. The 29-year old midfielder has also warned against underrating the abilities of the Southern Africans, not ranked amongst the big guns of African football.

How are preparations going for Black Stars? first leg Orange CAN 2013 qualifier against Malawi this weekend?

We are all looking forward to the game. We expect a tough test from the Malawians, just as you would expect from any team that plays against Ghana, they will be eager to make an impact. It is a very important game and we are ready for the test.

Do you think the Black Stars have an edge over the Malawians based on the fact that they do not have a high ranking compared to Ghana?

We cannot afford to underrate any team, not to even talk of Malawi. I have watched their game against Nigeria, which ended 1-1 and are very much aware of their potential. They showed great quality in that match and we expect same when we meet them. They also possess a remarkable fighting spirit.

What impact will the absence of regular captain John Mensah have on your side?

John is a great captain and also leader of the team. He will be sorely missed for this game. However, there are other players who are hoping to fill the vacuum created by his absence by delivering a performance which he (John) will be proud of. We are hoping he will be with us for the subsequent games.

Derek Boateng

What kind of result have you set sights on?

We are looking forward to a convincing result to boost our chances of qualifying. We have to take our chances very well to remain on course for the results we so much desire. We are very determined to deliver.

What are your expectations from this match?

I will make no predictions but the most important element is we carrying the day. We play as a unit and we are bent on qualifying for the final tournament next year in South Africa.

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