NATAL, Brazil -- Ghana captain Asamoah Gyan believes that the United States will be looking for payback when the two teams kick off their respective World Cup campaigns against each other here Monday evening.
"Mentally ,they don't want us to beat them for the third time, which is going to make things very, very interesting and difficult for us," Gyan said Sunday at the Black Stars pre-match press conference. "But we are focused on the game right now and ready to give it all tomorrow."
Ghana eliminated the Americans in the Round of 16 four years ago in South Africa and also beat them at Germany 2006, preventing the U.S from reaching the second round. Gyan's goal in extra time stood up as the game-winner in 2010. The striker, who plays his club football for Al Ain in the United Arab Emirates, also said that while he expects a difficult match on Monday, he believes the Black Stars hold the edge.
When asked if he thought Ghana was the more talented said, Gyan said, "I think so. I think we have young talented players coming up. Talking about the tournament, I think we've got the youngest team. Most of the players are playing well with their clubs. They are in good shape."
It remains unclear if Ghana will be boosted by the return of Gyan's strike partner, Majeed Waris. Waris injured his thigh in the team's final warm-up game against Korea Republic, but manager James Kwesi Appiah said that he had yet to decide on what role his forward would play.
"Waris has been training the last two days," Appiah said. "I'll look at his performance [in training] and decide on whether to start him tomorrow."