Ayew drives Ghana U20

CAIRO - Ghana's rising star Andre Ayew is making a name for himself at the Under-20 World Cup in Egypt.

CAIRO - Ghana's rising star Andre Ayew is making a name for himself at the Under-20 World Cup in Egypt.

The son of Abedi Pele - a three-time African Player of the Year who won the European Cup with Marseille in 1993 - Ayew will lead the Black Satellites in a quarterfinal against South Korea today, just 18 months after the teenager failed to cope with the pressure and expectation of playing for host Ghana at the African Cup of Nations.

"I hope this competition, and the few months left until the winter break, will be a springboard for me," Ayew said.

By the age of 18, Ayew was playing for Marseille in the Champions League and representing Ghana at the African Cup of Nations.

However, he ultimately failed to deliver and is playing on loan for Arles-Avignon in France's second division. But he is thriving as Ghana's Under-20 captain in Egypt.

"I can't say I'm the most experienced player in the world, but the little I have I try to bring into the group," he said when asked what he brought to coach Sallas Tetteh's team.

Playing behind two strikers, Ayew got the equaliser in Tuesday's 2-1 win against South Africa, scored from 25m in the 4-0 rout of England and almost got another with an acrobatic backheel volley.

"I was playing with apprehension, (trying) not to lose the ball," said Ayew, who has 18 full caps.

His father Abedi Ayew, widely known as Abedi Pele during his career, was African Footballer of the Year (1991-93) and a pioneer of African football, playing in Switzerland, Germany and France when African players were less widely sought after. - AP

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