Ghana grab vital win against Sudan in World Cup qualifier
In their first match since the disappointing CAN 2013 tournament, Ghana made light work of Sudan by earning to a 4-0 victory in their World Cup qualifier at the Baba Yara stadium in Kumasi. Ghana needed to win convincingly to satisfy their fans and also close the gap on group leaders Zambia.
Before the match midfielder Sulley Muntari talked about how desperate the Black Stars are to reach Brazil 2014 to make up for the disappointment of CAN 2013. You could see the urgency in the Black Stars play as they begun the game on an aggressive note, giving little room to their Sudanese counterparts to operate.
It was striker, Asamoah Gyan who broke the deadlock on nineteen minutes before Mubarak Wakaso hit a half-volley to increase the lead. Which meant Ghana went into the break with a 2-0 lead. After half time, Sudan looked like the stronger side but failed to translate that into goals. They worked themselves into the game and Ramadan Agab should have scored when he was left with only the Ghana goalkeeper to beat but blasted his effort. The North Africans kept a little bit of pressure on the Black Stars as they took advantage of some slack passing.
Black Stars coach, Kwesi Appiah made some changes which saw the likes of Solomon Asante, Emmanuel Agyemang Badu and Emmanuel Frimpong joining action. The Black Stars still did not enjoy the majority of the in possession following the changes and resorted to counter attacks which produced two other goals; Spartak Moscow striker Abdul Majeed Waris got his name on the score sheet on his debut competitive match before playing a part in the fourth goal which was scored by Agyemang Badu.
The Black Stars remain second in Group D with six points, just one point behind leaders Zambia, who were held to a 1-1 draw by Lesotho. The group winners will advance to a decisive two-legged playoff that will determine Africa’s five representatives at next year’s World Cup in Brazil.
Although not a brilliant performance Ghana were ruthless in front of goal and will need to be in their remaining games if they are to qualify for the final round playoff. Another win against Sudan in the return match in June should put the Black Stars in a good position going into the final two games.
By Ben JK Anim-Antwi (@kwesitheauthor)