History favours Ghana against Senegal

Ghana will be looking to continue the impressive record against Senegal when the two come face to face on Monday in Group C opener.

Both teams have met three times in previous tournaments and Ghana have two wins and a  draw.

The Black Stars will look to Nations Cup veteran likes of Asamoah Gyan, Andre Ayew and Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu to lead them out of the tough game against a rejuvenated Lions of Teranga.

But Ghana must punch above their weight after lacking conviction during the qualifiers despite topping their Group.

The team is still feeling the after-effects of an abortive World Cup campaign in Brazil where they suffered a first round exit.

New coach Avram Grant took charge six weeks ago and has tried to make the most of the time including experimenting a 3-5-2 formation.

There are no injury concerns in camp with Asamoah Gyan, Frank Acheampong and Emmanuel Agyemang-Badu all recovering from the knocks they suffered at their camping base in Seville.

But Senegal hold the aces to peg back Ghana after a good run in the qualifiers.

Coach Alain Giresse will be counting on the fitness of in-form Southampton striker Sadio Mane.

The 2002 fired the warning shot when they thumped Guinea 5-2 in pre-tournament warm up match played in Morocco.

Senegal are not new to Equatorial Guinea where they suffered early elimination during the 2012 tournament co-hosted with neighbours Gabon.

Striker Papis Demba Cisse was a member of that group and he knows this talented generation to banish those memories.

“The AFCON started since we are on the country. We are preparing quietly for a good start in the competition,” the Newcastle man said.

“Against Ghana, it will be a good game and it’s up to us to prepare ourselves and be in good conditions to do the job. I will fear no team in this pool. There are a lot of emotion coming back here because it went wrong the last time.

“This time, we are fortunate to be here and everything must be done to erase the memories we had left here.”

Senegal rounded up their preparations with a handsome 5-2 win over fellow AFCON finalists Guinea.