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News Article

AFCON 2021Q: Ghana beat South Africa thanks to goals from Partey and Kudus

Black Stars began their 2021 African Cup of Nations qualifying campaign with a comprehensive 2-0 win over the Bafana Bafana of South Africa at the Cape Coast Stadium. Thomas Partey and debutant Kudus Mohammed scored in either half to give Ghana a deserved win in Cape Coast.

Coach Kwesi Appiah made six changes to the team that lost against Tunisia at Afcon 2019 in Egypt. A debut start for Gideon Mensah and a return to the team for striker Emmanuel Boateng.

Bafana coach Molefi Ntseki also made a number of changes to the side that beat Mali in the Nelson Mandela Challenge, as Buhlebuyeza Mkhwanazi, Sifiso Hlanti and Thamsanqa Mkhize all returned, while Percy Tau and Bongani Zungu also both made a comeback to boost the side.

South Africa had a great chance to open the scoring in the 16th minute after Tau's free-kick fell into the path of Bradley Grobler just outside the six-yard box but the SuperSport United striker sent his strike way over the crossbar.

Atletico Madrid’s midfielder Thomas Partey broke the deadlock for the Black Stars with a well taken 25 yards strike in the 35th minutes after receiving a loose ball from Jordan Ayew that left goalkeeper Ronwen Williams flat-footed.

Bafana, however, managed to carve out an opening on the stroke of halftime after Thapelo Morena, who replaced the injured Zungu, raced clear on the right side before seeing his effort smothered by South African based Richard Ofori.

 

The second half started with the Black Stars continuing from where the left off in the first half, putting the South Africans under a lot of pressure but were unable to carve out an opening in the final third.

In the 50th minute, Emmanuel Boateng had an opportunity to double the lead for Ghana but a header from a well-executed free-kick from Alfred Duncan went straight into the waiting arms of Ronwen Williams.

Coach Kwesi Appiah brought on Mohammed Kudus in the 61st minute for Alfred Duncan for his debut appearance for the Stars. South Africa coach Ntseki reacted by also  bringing on Lebogang Mothiba in place of Grobler while Kermit Erasmus came on for Thembinkosi Lorch moments later to take the game to the Black Stars.

A lead thanks to a solo effort from Mohammed Kudus who had space and time to power home an unstoppable strike into the top corner.

Bafana lacked the cutting edge going forward in the closing phase of the game, with Ofori having nothing to do in goal as the encounter ended 2-0, with the Black Stars taking the second spot in Group C with three points, while South Africa sit in third place.

Up next for the Black Stars will be an away trip to Sao Tome on Monday with the aim of cementing their control in Group C.

 

TEAM NEWS:

Ghana: Richard Ofori, Andy Yiadom, Gideon Mensah, Joseph Aidoo, Kassim Nuhu, Iddrisu Baba, Andre Ayew, Thomas Partey, Alfred Duncan, Jordan Ayew, Emmanuel Boateng

Subs: Felix Annan, Joseph Attamah, Nicholas Opoku, Samuel Owusu, Mohammed Kudus, Mumuni Safui, Patrick Twumasi.

South Africa: Williams, Mkhize, Hlatshwayo, Mkhwanazi, Hlanti, Furman, Zungu, Mokeke, Tau, Grobler, Lorch.

Subs: Keet, Mathoho, Morena, Maela, Lebusa, Phiri, Mvala, Manyama, Serero, Modiba, Mothiba, Erasmus.

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