Gyan: Ghana chasing history

JOHANNESBURG - The prospect of setting a new benchmark for African participation at the World Cup was a major motivation for Ghana ahead of Friday's quarter-final against Uruguay, striker Asamoah Gyan said.

"For me it will be history. There are three African sides who have made the World Cup quarter-finals but we have an opportunity to do something never done before," he said of the prospect of playing in next week's semi-finals if the team beat their South American opponents.

GEAR: Get your Ghana shirt

"It's a big opportunity for the whole of Africa and because of that we have no doubt we have all the African support."

The French-based striker, who has netted three of Ghana's four goals at the tournament, said the expectation on the team at the continent's first World Cup posed no problems.

"There is no pressure on us. We know how to psyche ourselves. We know how to go into the game," he told a news conference on Thursday.

Coach Milovan Rajevac said final fitness tests on injured players meant he would finalise the starting line-up only just before the evening kick-off at Johannesburg's Soccer City.

"We have four or five injured players and it's up to our medical team to try and make them fit," he said at the same news conference.

"We'll see who the players are, who we can count on. It depends what the medical team will decide."

The two serious doubts are over Kevin-Prince Boateng, who scored in the second-round win over the United States, and full-back Hans Sarpei.

Ghana are already without the suspended Dede Ayew and Jonathan Mensah, both out after an accumulation of yellow cards.

"This result depends on us," the Serbian-born coach said. "It is important how we start and that we try and impose ourselves on Uruguay from the beginning."

Cameroon in 1990 and Senegal in 2002 are the only previous African teams to have reached the last eight at the World Cup finals.

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