Ghana coach Kwesi Appiah told his players to pick themselves up and win Saturday’s third-place match after their semi-final defeat on Wednesday.
The Black Stars were crestfallen after losing 3-2 on penalties to Burkina Faso at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit after drawing 1-1 after extra-time.
Appiah tried to lift their spirits in the dressing room and worked on the psyche of his youngish squad for their next match in Port Elizabeth against Mali-a side they beat 1-0 in the Group stage at the same venue.
His words to the playing body were paraphrased by Ghana Football Association Media Committee chairman Randy Abbey.
“He told them that he thanked them for what they have done, they could have done better,” Abbey told reporters.
“That this team he is building he has a lot of young players.
“Inasmuch as he believes they could have gone far and they’ve not done so, he wants them to focus on the third place.
“And then we also raised the issue of the World Cup qualifier and the fact that believes that with some time, we can be a very good side.”