Who will be the surprise inclusion in Kwesi Appiah's final 23-man squad?
Ghana coach James Kwesi Appiah is set to unveil a preliminary 25-man squad which would be pruned down to 23 after holding a pre-tournament camp in the UAE ahead of the 2013 AFCON.
There are players who are sure bets to be on the plane to South Africa on January 17.
But there are others who will be desperately waiting by Christmas whether they would make the final cut ahead of a naming of an initial 25-man squad.
These could however be few surprises who could gatecrash Kwesi Appiah’s squad for the continental showpiece.
The former England U16 captain who has been cleared by FIFA to play for the African giants, is being considered by Kwesi Appiah for a place in team.
Frimpong, who is on loan at English Npower Championship side Charlton Athletics may be handed his debut in a pre-tournament warm-up game against Tunisia in Abu Dhabi.
With limited space in midfield to compete for, the Arsenal star could be included in the final 23-man squad if AC Milan ace Sulley Muntari or Agyemang-Badu who have been battling with various degrees of injuries are unable to gain fitness before the deadline for submission of names.
The South African-based defender missed out on his Ghana debut last month when documentation issues denied him his participation in the 1-0 friendly win over Cape Verde in Lisbon.
The 24-year-old former Asante Kotoko center-back has been impressive in the PSL for Maritzburg United which has earned him massive rave reviews.
He has reportedly been on the radar of some top German Bundesliga sides.
With John Boye racing against time to be fully fit and uncertainties surrounding injury-prone Jonathan Mensah, the ex-Ghana international could draft in Mohammed if the Stade Rennes man is unable to shake off the thigh injury.
Quincy Owusu-Abeyie has emerged as the fans’ favourite over the last couple of years for his deaf touches and theatrics and for many who follow the exploits of foreign-based players; they have been awashed by his sublime form.
Many have backed the inclusion of the former Arsenal and Ajax Amsterdam youth wing-wizard but he has consistently been overlooked by the technical handlers.
The 26-year-old is set to return to training for Panathinaikos early next week and play in the big derby against Olympiakos.
Coach Appiah’s penchant for wingers seems to have been satisfied by Berekum Chelsea’s Solomon Asante who looks to have sealed the spot.
Quincy’s inclusion will come as good surprise to many Ghanaians.
Nana Akwasi Asare
The FC Utrecht captain is one of the players who have been consistently knocking on the doors of the Black Stars.
He had his breakthrough in the friendly against Cape Verde last month but played as a right winger, a position which does not appear to be a headache for Appiah and his assistant Maxwell Konadu.
The former Fetteh Feyenoord player is writing the headlines at the Stadion Galgenwaard showcasing qualities not as a left-back; his Orthodox role, but as an efficient winger.
Kwesi Appiah is not likely to trade him for either Harrison Afful or David Addy who have made recent appearances for the team.
The 21-year-old former Manchester City triallist seems to have fallen out of favour at the Black Stars as Kwesi Appiah has overlooked him for the left-back position in recent call-ups.
After making two appearances for the Black Stars, the last one coming in the friendly against Liberia, the former Right to Dream Academy graduate is not likely to be considered for the Nations Cup squad.
But helping Stromsgodset to break their ages old jinx and finish second in the Norwegian top-flight speaks volumes for him.
Since moving to the Dalian Aerbin in the Chinese Super League, the former Red Star Belgrade versatile defender has earned just two call-ups, the last coming as a stop-gap replacement after Jonathan Mensah and Isaac Vorsah pulled out of the friendly against Cape Verde with injuries.
Addy is not likely to be named in the 25-man squad for the pre-tournament camping in the UAE. Ideally, there are only eight places in defence for grasp and all seem taken over.