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Friday, June 8, 2012
ESPNsoccernet: June 9, 10:02 AM UK
Muntari not out for revenge

Ghana captain Sulley Muntari insists revenge will not be on his mind when he leads his side out for their World Cup Group D qualifying clash against Zambia.

The Black Stars were knocked out of this year's African Nations Cup by eventual winners Zambia at the semi-final stage. Emmanuel Mayuka's 78th-minute goal was the difference the last time the two sides met, but Muntari is not using that as motivation in Ndola.

Muntari acknowledges it will be a tough game but is confident Ghana, who began their campaign by thrashing Lesotho 7-0, can make it two wins from as many games.

"It's not about revenge,'' the AC Milan midfielder told Ghana's official website. "It's about us getting a good result over there. Football is serious but not anything like that. We want a good result.

"Against Zambia it's going to be a very tough game. We will try our best to do something important for Ghana and ourselves. We want to go in and get a good result.''

Zambia, by contrast, opened their account with a shock 2-0 defeat to Sudan last week and will already fear two successive losses could leave their qualifying hopes in tatters.

South Africa's interim coach Steve Komphela insists nothing short of victory against Botswana at Gaborone in Group A will appease him.

Bafana Bafana were held to a 1-1 draw against Ethiopia as they failed to triumph for the seventh successive match, although they welcome a side who were beaten 2-0 by Central African Republic last time out.

"It's high time we started winning and I'm highly optimistic about our chances,'' Komphela said. "The mood is relaxed and it's a focused team.''

Ivory Coast, runners-up to Zambia in the African Nations Cup, have been given a welcome boost after Yaya Toure was passed fit for their trip to Morocco in Group C.

The match will mark the first time the Manchester City midfielder has been involved since he limped out of the Blues' dramatic Premier League triumph against QPR last month with a hamstring injury.

The Ivorians began their campaign to reach their third consecutive World Cup with a comfortable 2-0 triumph over Tanzania, while Morocco were held to a 1-1 draw against Gambia.

Senegal got their World Cup qualifying campaign under way with a 3-1 win over Liberia in Group J and they will be looking to continue their perfect start in Uganda.

In Group B, Equatorial Guinea welcome Sierra Leone and Tunisia visit Cape Verde, in Group E Gabon host Burkina Faso and Niger travel to Congo, while in Group F Malawi and Namibia play at home to Nigeria and Kenya respectively.




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