Ghana without its top 2 goalkeepers for World Cup

Nov 13, 2022, 5:16 PM | Updated: Nov 14, 2022, 8:31 am

Ghana had to leave its top two goalkeepers out of the World Cup squad after they were injured ahead of the announcement on Monday.

First-choice goalkeeper Jojo Wollacott broke his finger in the warmup ahead of a game with his English club side Charlton Athletic this weekend and has now been ruled out of the World Cup, while backup Richard Ofori has a knee injury, according to his South African club Orlando Pirates.

That means Ghana has been forced to dig deep into its reserves for the tournament in Qatar.

Lawrence Ati-Zigi, who plays his club soccer in Switzerland, is likely to start the World Cup in goal. The other two goalkeepers named in the squad are Abdul Manaf Nurudeen, who has two caps, and 19-year-old Ibrahim Danlad, who is yet to play for Ghana.

As expected, Ghana selected defender Tariq Lamptey, a former England youth international, and forward Iñaki Williams, who has one cap for Spain, after they changed allegiance this year.

Ayew brothers Andre and Jordan also made the squad as did Arsenal midfielder Thomas Partey. Jeffrey Schlupp and Joseph Paintsil were left out.

The 26-year-old Wollacott will need surgery on his finger, Charlton said on Monday after the club gave him two days to see if he had a chance of making the World Cup.

“Everyone at the club is bitterly disappointed for Jojo,” Charlton manager Ben Garner said. “He played such an important part in Ghana getting to the World Cup and we all know how much he was looking forward to it.

“For the injury to happen so close to the tournament…is very cruel.”

Ghana is one of only three African teams to have reached the quarterfinals of the World Cup, a feat it achieved in South Africa in 2010, but it goes to this year’s tournament at a low point.

It was eliminated in the group stage of the African Cup of Nations at the start of the year in its worst performance at the continental championship. That led to coach Milovan Rajevac being fired in January and replaced with Otto Addo.

Lamptey and Williams are among a new group of players Addo has introduced to the team.

Ghana plays Portugal in its first game at the World Cup and will also face South Korea and Uruguay in Group H.

That final group game against Uruguay is a rematch of the 2010 quarterfinal, when Luis Suarez infamously blocked a goal-bound header with his arm late in extra time to deny Ghana a place in the semifinals. Asamoah Gyan missed the penalty and Uruguay won in a shootout.



Goalkeepers: Abdul Manaf Nurudeen (Eupen), Ibrahim Danlad (Berekum Chelsea), Lawrence Ati-Zigi (St. Gallen).

Defenders: Denis Odoi (Club Brugge), Tariq Lamptey (Brighton), Alidu Seidu (Clermont), Daniel Amartey (Leicester), Joseph Aidoo (Celta Vigo), Alexander Djiku (Strasbourg), Mohammed Salisu (Southampton), Baba Rahman (Reading), Gideon Mensah (Auxerre).

Midfielders: Andre Ayew (Al Sadd), Thomas Partey (Arsenal), Elisha Owusu (Gent), Salis Abdul Samed (Lens), Mohammed Kudus (Ajax), Daniel Kofi Kyereh (Freiburg).

Forwards: Daniel Afriyie (Hearts of Oak), Kamal Sowah (Club Brugge), Abdul Fatawu Issahaku (Sporting Lisbon), Osman Bukari (Red Star Belgrade), Iñaki Williams (Athletic Bilbao), Antoine Semenyo (Bristol City), Jordan Ayew (Crystal Palace), Kamaldeen Sulemana (Rennes).


AP World Cup coverage:

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Vancouver Canucks' Elias Pettersson (40) scores against Columbus Blue Jackets goalie Joonas Korpisa...
Associated Press

Pettersson scores twice, Canucks beat Blue Jackets 5-2

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Elias Pettersson scored twice, Bo Horvat had a career-high four assists and the Vancouver Canucks beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-2 on Friday night for their second victory in three games under Rick Tocchet. Tocchet took over as coach after Bruce Boudreau was fired Sunday. Quinn Hughes had a goal […]
23 hours ago
Calgary Flames defenseman Nikita Zadorov (16) is congratulated after scoring against the Seattle Kr...
Associated Press

Flames rebound with impressive 5-2 win over Kraken

SEATTLE (AP) — Tyler Toffoli and the Calgary Flames rebounded from one of their ugliest losses of the season and picked up an important two points in the Pacific Division before starting the All-Star break. Toffoli, Elias Lindholm and Blake Coleman each had a goal and two assists, and the Flames topped the Seattle Kraken […]
23 hours ago
Toronto Raptors forward Pascal Siakam (43) shoots against Golden State Warriors forward Jonathan Ku...
Associated Press

Curry’s 35 points send Warriors past Raptors, 129-117

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Stephen Curry had 35 points and 11 assists, and the Golden State Warriors beat the Toronto Raptors 129-117 on Friday night. The high-scoring affair was close until the Warriors pulled away with a 31-point fourth quarter, securing a sweep in the season series. “It feels like we took better care of […]
23 hours ago
New Jersey Devils' Jack Hughes and Vitek Vanecek (41) celebrate after Hughes scored in overtime of ...
Associated Press

Hughes scores winner in OT to lead Devils past Stars 3-2

DALLAS (AP) — Jack Hughes scored his second goal of the game 20 seconds into overtime, lifting the New Jersey Devils to a 3-2 win over the Dallas Stars on Friday night. Hughes’ winning goal skipped off the stick of Dallas’ Tyler Seguin and eluded Jake Oettinger as the Devils rallied from a 2-0 deficit […]
23 hours ago
Bradie Tennell, Isabeau Levito, Amber Glenn and Starr Andrews, from left, hold up their medals afte...
Associated Press

Teen Isabeau Levito wins U.S. women’s figure skating title

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Graceful, gutsy and seemingly unfazed by the bright lights, 15-year-old Isabeau Levito decided to go for it in her free skate while reminding herself once more to just stay calm. The teen star needed a near-flawless free skate to capture gold at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships after Bradie Tennell’s […]
23 hours ago
Orlando Magic forward Paolo Banchero (5) is fouled by Miami Heat forward Caleb Martin during the fi...
Associated Press

Heat rally again, top Magic 110-105 to close 3-0 homestand

MIAMI (AP) — Bam Adebayo has a theory. All these close games that the Miami Heat are playing now, in his mind, are providing valuable lessons to draw upon later this season. And the fact that they’re winning a lot of those games right now is an added bonus. Jimmy Butler had 29 points, Adebayo […]
23 hours ago
Ghana without its top 2 goalkeepers for World Cup