Black Stars assistant coach Kwesi Appiah had stoked the controversy last week when he said that Keshi's statement about his team has challenged them to go further than their last silver medal finish at Angola 2010. Keshi has, however, said that he did not in any way undermine the chances of Ghana. "I was asked to name my favourite teams to win the Nations Cup and I said on paper, Ivory Coast and Senegal have the strongest teams, but tournaments like these are full of surprises," Keshi said. "Maybe, because I did not list Ghana and the question was asked on Ghanaian soil, the journalist decided to say I have written Ghana off. How can I write off a team that made it to the quarter finals of the last World Cup?" he asked. He advised the Ghanaian team to step up preparations for the tournament, instead of wasting time reacting to what they perceived as an attack on the Black Stars. "Every team that has qualified is capable of winning the championship, but you will agree with me that some teams are rated higher than others even by Fifa, that is what I simply said."