Themba Hadebe, File, Associated Press
FILE - In this Jan. 28, 2012 file photo, Ghana's Anthony Annan during their African Cup of Nations Group D soccer match against Mali at the Stade de Franceville in Franceville, Gabon, Saturday Jan. 28, 2012. A Ghana team spokesman says midfielder Anthony Annan will remain with the squad at the African Cup of Nations after his mother died.

FRANCEVILLE, Gabon — Anthony Annan wants to win the African Cup of Nations with Ghana to honor his mother, who died unexpectedly on Thursday.

Midfielder Annan has decided to stay with Ghana's squad at the tournament as the Black Stars prepare for Sunday's quarterfinal against Tunisia in Franceville.

"I am saddened by the death of my mother but I am still focused and committed to going out there to play for my nation and help win the Africa Cup of Nations title," Annan said on Friday. "Winning the title would serve as a big honor in memory of my mother."

The Ghana Football Association said Annan's mother, Sophia Sampson, died Thursday night in Ghana after falling sick earlier in the day. The GFA said members of Ghana's squad were "stunned" by the news and were consoling Annan.

"As Anthony has decided not to leave the Nations Cup to go home, the GFA, the coaches, players and staff will continue to offer him our constant support," the association said.

Annan started in all three of Ghana's games at the African Cup so far, including the 1-1 draw with Guinea on Wednesday that sealed a place in the last eight.