WAKASO INSPIRES GHANA TO ETHIOPIA WIN
Daniel Amartey of Ghana on the attack during the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier between Ghana and Ethiopia held at Cape Coast Sports Stadium in Cape Coast, Ghana on 3 September 2021 © BackpagePix
Ghana edged out Ethiopia 1-0 in their first 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification – Group G – match at the Cape Coast Stadium on Friday night.
The Black Stars will now face South Africa in their second Group G match on Monday, while Walia Ibex are scheduled to play hosts to Zimbabwe on Tuesday.
Walia Ibex sat back and invited pressure from the Black Stars – allowing the home side to control the match, but their chances were limited to long-range shots.
Mubarak Wakaso placed his effort from a free-kick over the crossbar, before Andre Ayew’s shot from distance was blocked inside the first 25 minutes of the game.
The Black Stars were forced to make a change when Jeffrey Schlupp went down injured and he was by Daniel Kyereh just before the half-hour mark.
However, the Crystal Palace star’s injury did not deter the home side and they managed to break the deadlock in the 35th minute through their long-range specialist, Wakaso.
The left-footed player unleashed an absolute screamer which hit the back of the net to hand Ghana a 1-0 lead with goalkeeper Balcha Shanko having misread the flight of the ball.
The score was 1-0 to Ghana during the half-time break courtesy of Wakaso’s 13th international goal for the Black Stars.
Ethiopia coach Wubetu Abate decided to pull out Shanko, who was to blame for the hosts’ goal, and the 23-year-old was replaced by Fasil Gebremichael prior to the start of the second-half.
However, the Black Stars continued to dominate the match, but they were making many poor decisions in the final third and this allowed visitors’ defence to recover, and clear the lines.
Ghana coach Charles Akonnor introduced Yaw Yeboah, who tried to make an immediate impact with 18 minutes left, but the Poland-based winger’s effort was well-saved by Fasil Gebremichael.
The hosts then stood firm at the back in the latter stages of the encounter and ultimately, Ghana emerged 1-0 winners on the night.
Ghana (1) 1 (Wakaso 35′)
Ethiopia (0) 0
Ghana: Ofori, Yiadom, Amartey, Djiku, Baba Rahman, Iddrisu Baba, Wakaso (Lomotey 70′), Schlupp (Kyereh 28′), Sulemana (Yeboah 69′), A. Ayew, J. Ayew (Fameyeh 90′).
Ethiopia: Shanko (F.Gebremichael 46′) Tamene, Baye, Yesuf, Solomon (Mohammed 46′), Endashaw, Tonjo, Kebede (Gugsa 75′), Bekele (Panom 85′), Nasir, A.Gebremichael (Yalew 72′).