The Black Stars of Ghana played their Nigerian counterparts on Friday March 25, in the firts leg playoff of 2022 World Cup tie at Baaba Yaara Sports arena in Ghana.
At exactly 19:30 GMT, the Morrocan ref blew his whistle for the start of match, which saw a completely stuffed 40,000 capacity stadium, with larger part of the spectators being Ghanaians.
In fact, the fans were charged in support of their team (The Black Stars) to triumph. Ghana began the game with all confidence, creating opportunities to get an early opener, yet the Super Eagles of Nigeria additionally kept forestalling the Stars to score.
Nigeria also showed such a lot of boldness on the field, overlooking the huge supporters on the side of the Black Stars at the Kumasi stadium. They matched the Ghana team boot for boot, making it to appear as though there is no host team. Truth be told, the Nigerians showed class by playing well in the first half similarly as the Black Stars.
However, Ghana took the game to the Nigerians, harassing their defenders all through the first half. The Stars were marvelous on the day, particularly the lateral defenders who dazzled the fans. Ghana’s striker Afena Gyan and Issahaku also demonstrated why they merited a call-up into the team.
They individually played exceptionally well in the first half, apart from the entire team showing maturity on the field of play. For the most part, Ghana was phenomenal in the first half although it ended goalless.
In the second half, it was a back and forth movement into each others half, with Nigeria getting the most clear scoring opportunity in the 54th minute, but Moses Simon’s shot was saved by Ghana goalie Joojo Wollacot. The Nigerians showed blazes of Brilliance but created no reasonable opportunities upfront.
Notwithstanding, In the 76th minute, Nigeria’s penalty decision by the referee was precluded after the VAR showed that Ghana’s defender Ousman Bukari was fouled in the 18 box before his hands contacted the ball. The Ghanaians put in more pressure on the Super Eagles to get an opener to secure them for the next leg in Abuja.
But all efforts proved futile. Perhaps, the absence of one of Ghana’s strikers Felix Afena Gyan, who was bugging the Nigerian defenders was missed after he got injured and was stretched- off. Jordan Ayew, was also subbed in the ending minutes of the game.
The match ended in a stalemate, with no goal to either sides. Ghana would now have to go to Nigeria to battle for their place in appearing at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. Nigeria also has their predetermination in their grasp on their home grounds as they welcome the Black Stars in Abuja on Tuesday March 29.
Meanwhile, in the other Africa- World Cup qualifying matches played earlier, Egypt beat Senegal by a lone goal, whilst Algeria also silenced Cameroon by a goal to nothing. Tunisia beat Mali by 1-0 and Dr Congo Drew 1-1 with Morocco.