An early goal from Thomas Partey was enough to secure Ghana’s place at the 2022 Qatar World Cup as they beat Nigeria on away goals after a 1-1 draw in the second leg of their qualifying play-off.
William Troost-Ekong’s penalty was not enough to stop the Black Stars from recording a famous victory.
The game started slowly, but within 10 minutes, Partey took aim from just outside the box, and Francis Uzoho dived but could not stop it.
Nigeria responded and 22 minutes into the match, Ademola Lookman weaved into the box and past Daniel Amartey, Denis Odoi bumped him over; that’s when Troost-Ekong made the penalty the second goal of the match.
Ghana made three changes at half-time and also changed formation from 4-3-3 to 3-5-2. This gave them greater midfield control, able to protect their defence and move the ball forward with something approximating to aggression. But, the Black Stars were not going to score another goal.
The Black Stars qualified on away goal rule.
Nigerian striker, Victor Osimhen had a goal ruled out for offside in the dying minutes of first half.
Ghana defender Gideon Mensah had said it is a different Black Stars that will take on the Super Eagles in today’s match, because they had failed to take advantage of the first leg of the qualifier after settling for a goalless draw in Kumasi on Friday.
Mensah said he and his teammates will put in more fighting spirit to make sure they achieve their goal.
“We had a fighting spirit in the first leg in Kumasi and the game ended goalless so obviously we have won nothing. We are here to push more and give more fighting spirit so you should expect something more than we did in Kumasi.“
They were not as energetic as expected, and may need to improve in order to go far at the World Cup, but they surely are going to Qatar 2022.