The senior national football team, the Black Stars, yesterday landed in Kumasi to commence preparation for their double-header 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers against the Barea of Madagascar on Friday at the Baba Yara Stadium and the Coelacanths of Comoros on Tuesday in Moroni, Comoros.
Twenty four out of the 25 players invited trained behind closed doors yesterday at the Baba Yara Stadium under the tutelage of Head Coach, Chris Hughton.
Following injuries to some of the invitees, Hughton handed late call-ups to Leicester City attacker, Abdul Fatawu Issahaku, and Medeama SC defender, Nurudeen Abdulai, to replace Kamaldeen Sulemana and Abdul Mumin, respectively.
FC St. Gallen shot stopper, Lawrence Ati-Zigi, was the only player absent from the first training session.
The Communication Director of the Ghana Football Association (GFA), Henry Asante Twum, disclosed to the Times Sports that Ati-Zigi was expected to arrive yesterday to join the team.
Hughton, together with his assistants, Mas-Ud Didi Dramani and George Boateng, took the outfield players through some light work-out sessions and later focused on some tactical, fitness, and team chemistry sessions.
While goalkeeper trainer, Richard Kingson, took both Richard Ofori and Joseph Wollacott through agility, low diving, and scooping ground balls drills, among others,
The team will be back at training today at the same venue behind closed doors.
They will hold a pre-match press conference tomorrow at 3:30pm ahead of their final training session at 5pm just after the Madagascans have had their turn at 4pm.
The team is expected to fly out on a chartered flight on Saturday morning to Moroni, the federal capital of Comoros, for the second game on Tuesday.