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Black Stars Jonathan Mensah admits Russia 2018 is a distant dream now

Realistically it is very tough. We have to win two games and Egypt has to lose two - Jonathan Mensah.

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play Jonathan Mensah in the game against Egypt (Senyuiedzorm Awusi Adadevoh)

Ghana defender Jonathan Mensah admits the Black Stars may have given themselves too much to do after falling five points behind Egypt in the race for a place at Russia 2018 and four behind Uganda.

A goal in each half gave Egypt a 2-0 win over Ghana at the Borg Al Arab Stadium and left Ghana’s world cup hopes almost in ruins.

The faces of the Ghana players who had arrived at the in high spirits told a story on its own and Mensah said the dressing room felt like a ghost town after the game.

“It was very tough in the dressing room. There was not a word said and naturally everyone was sad. It is tough for the team and the nation”, Mensah said.

“We played good football but didn’t win so it does not count. You have to give the credit to the Egypt national team.”

Mensah, a member of the side that played at the 2010 and 2014 World Cups admits the chances of making a personal third straight appearance at the World Cup are slim.

“Realistically it is very tough. We have to win two games and Egypt has to lose two. It is very hard but mathematically we are still in the race so we are going to keep trying hard and hope everything ends well. There are four more games which we have to win so we have to keep at it and work as hard as possible.”

In order to stand any chance of catching up, Mensah suggest it is not just the players who must up their game. Defeat in Alexandria extended Ghana’s winless run to five games in a row and while he admits that is not good enough, he is also adamant it is not just about the players.

“Five games in a row without a win is incredibly tough. We are the players and want to win and we are doing our part but if other things don’t go well, it reflects in our performance. There are many things that affects how a team does and everyone knows lately that other aspects have not gone well.”

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