Johannesburg – Orlando Pirates goalkeeper Richard Ofori has not been included in Ghana’s squad for the World Cup due to a knee injury, according to reports.
Ofori started the season well with the Buccaneers, playing a key role as they reached the semi-finals of the MTN8 against Mamelodi Sundowns.
He was so crucial for Pirates that he was called-up by the Black Stars during their preparations matches for the World Cup in September.
That feat put him in firm position to make the squad for the tournament in Qatar, where he would have been the only representative from the Premiership.
But upon his return from national team duty, Ofori got injured against Golden Arrows last month and was replaced by his deputy Siyabonga Mpontshane.
Mpontshane started two games for the Sea Robbers, including inspiring the team to the MTN8 final after they beat the Brazilians in the semis.
But after missing the Soweto derby, where Pirates lost 1-0 to arch-rivals Kaizer Chiefs, Ofori returned for the MTN8 final as they beat AmaZulu 1-0.
After that game, reports were rife that Ofori got injured, while he was a notable absentee during their preparations for the Carling Black Label Cup.
Moreover, last Wednesday he arrived at Orlando Stadium with his knee heavily strapped.
He missed the Carling Black Label Cup final on Saturday where Pirates were thumped 4-0 by Sundowns, putting his World Cup aspirations into further doubt.
On Sunday, Ghana’s sports journalist Gary Al-Smith reported that Ofori has fluids on his knee and won’t be able to recover for the global showpiece.
Ghana, who beat Nigeria en route to qualifying for the tournament, are in Group H alongside Portugal, Uruguay and South Korea.