This was a clear case of possession but no penetration. A lot of efforts but no effervescence. Ghana came into this needing a win to get back on track after an unfortunate draw against Benin in the opener.
Ghana’s first shot on target came in the 89th minute of the game when Andy Yiadom drive through; played a one two pass with Owusu and hit it weakly with his weaker foot. That did not trouble Onana in anyway who had been on holiday all through the game. Just minutes before, Kwabena Owusu had picked up the ball in midfield after a poor pass from the Cameroonians, ran the entire length of the field, fired his shot against the crossbar to the disgust of a waiting, and free Jordan Ayew. It was Ghana’s highlight of the game. Ghana began to play in the last ten minutes of the game and the attacking prowess of Gyan and Owusu seemed to have bolstered the Stars a bit.
The Stars looked comfortable with the two men but it was a case of too little too late for the Black Stars. The first half did not quite particularly live up to the expectation of a Black Stars team but there were flashes of what they could do. In the eighth minute, a flurry of chances fell to Kassim Nuhu who fluffed one and missed the other by just a whisker. Those could have easily handed Ghana a boost but they fell to the unlikeliest of players.
As the first half wore on, the game became increasingly difficult for the Black Stars who continually had to labour for the second balls and lacked a general posture of imposing themselves on the game. Jonathan Mensah who had a great game saved Ghana’s blushes when he cleared the ball off the feet of Viallreal man Toko Ekambi who was through on goal. Ten minutes after goalkeeper Richard Ofori made a defining save to deny Christian Bassogog an opportunity to register his name on the scoresheet. It was Cameroon’s best chance – a chance that could have easily swayed the game in their favour.
The Indomitable Lions on the other hand got what they deserved from the game. Get the ball, hold it up, frustrate the Ghanaians who will be chasing the game all through and pounce on a chance if you find an opening- a good enough game plan to hit the levels you want to achieve in an AFCON game if you want to qualify. Looks like Seedorf has learnt the way in Africa so quickly. He started the game making three changes to the back four that won in their opener against Guinea Bissau – a decision many Cameroonians in the press box disagreed with. Yet, it was still a solid performance from the indomitable Lions. Oyongo and Bong on the left side mopped up well and the ever-imposing Ngadeu was excellent.
The Stars now have a mountain to climb in the next game against minnows, Guinea Bissau who looked impressive in the first game albeit losing 2-0. However, Ghana have been in this situation before. 13 years ago when Egypt hosted, Ghana had to win against Zimbabwe to qualify to the next stage of the competition after losing to Nigeria in the opening game and winning against Senegal in the next. Not a good omen as we head into this final game. There is a mountain between this team and the knockout stage but mountains are there to be climbed.
By Yaw Ofosu Larbi from Egypt | 3news.com