Zambia through to AFCON finals after beating Ghana 1-0

Below is how the game was captured by the Guardian newspaper of UK:

90 min: Another heroic block by Zambia as Ghana pile on the pressure! There will be at least four more minutes of this to endure …

89 min: That’s a terrific tackle by Himoonde to prevent Inkoom from cutting the ball back to Tagoe after a defensive mistake. Corner to Ghana. Sunzu clears.

88 min: Muntari’s first contribution is to take a corner. And under-hit it.

87 min: Ghana throw on Sulley Muntari, who has three minutes to atone for a disappointing tournament by him so far.

86 min: Ghana pile men into the box for a corner. But Asamoah’s delivery fails to beat the first defender.

84 min: RED CARD! Like John Mensah against Botswana earlier in the tournament, Boateng has just been sent off for cynicallyt bringing down an opponent to stop a counter-attack.

81 min: Tagoe, the man who came on instead of Gyan, tires to make gfains down the left but Zambia quickly get he ball back and rip forward on another slick counter. But Kalaba’s shot lacks the power and precision to disturb Kwarasey.

79 min: This time Mweene does well on a cross, cutting out Dede’s delivery.

GOAL! Ghana 0-1 Zambia (Mayuka 77′) After all of Ghana’s misses, Zambia strike on the counter, with the substitute Mayuka performing a little feint to get away from Boye and make space for a shot and then curling the ball in off the post from the edge of the box!

69 min: Mweene’s one weakness seems to be his didginess on crosses. He has just missed another, although his attempt to clasp it was sufficient to prevent Gyan from making a proper connection.

67 min: Good Kalaba cross. Bad Sunzu header.

65 min: Strong and skilful run by Gyan, culminating with a decent shot that Mweene saves comfortably.

62 min: Boateng booked for foul on Katongo.

61 min: Dede curls a decent freekick into the box and desperate Zambia marking means three Ghanaians challenge for the ball unhindered. Gyan heads at Mweene.

58 min: Dede dispossessed Kabala and the darts into the box, before being crowded out.

55 min: Mayuka raids down the right and sends a low cross tantalisingly close to Kalaba, but Boye does well to intervene and prod behind for a corner.

52 min: Yet more errant finishing by Ghana, as Jordan Ayew fails to connect with a fine cross from his brother, and then Boye, improvising quickly, heads over the bar.

49 min: Jordan cuts in from the left and lets fly but can’t beat Mweene. Meanwhile, Zambia manager Hervé Renard roars and gesticulates excitedxlty on the sideline, prompting Clive Tyldsley on ITV to suggest: “He looks a bit like Teddy Sheringham and acts a bit like Basil Fawlty.” Was wondering how he’d manage to crowbar in a reference to Sheringham. Mention of that night in Barcelona can’t be far behind …

46 min: Zambia have made a change, with Mayuka replacing Chamanga. Zambia’s counter-attacking potential is thius boosted, as Mayukla is a nimble schemer sort.

Half-time: Ghana dominated, playing with imaginations and a high tempo, but lacking incision. Zambia look threatning on their rare counter-attacks. The game, then, is finely poised.

43 min: Gyan nods wide from 10 yards. Gyan, incidentally, has the number 3 shaved in the side of his head, presumably because that is his jersey number. I wonder if this wheeze of decorating your head with your clothes’ number will catch on? Should I tattoo 10 on my forehead in reference to my shoe size? Perhaps I should consider shaving ‘100% polyster’ into my eyebrows to denote my underwear material?

41 min: Inkoom blasts high and wide after being put free down the right. Given Zambia’s counter-attacking prowess, Ghana could be made to pay for their profligacy here.

38 min: Asamoah’s shot from 20 yards is deflected wide by Nkausu.

36 min: Mweene comes hurtling out of goal to intercept a corner … but misses entirely. Happily for him, so did Mensah.

32 min: As they did against Senegal in the first match, Zambia counter-attack brilliantly, with Kalaba tisting cleverly before threading an artful ball through to Katongo … who, following a well-timed run, is free in front of goal … but tonkls wide!

30 min: Dede clips a freekick to the back post, where Jordan arrives unmarked but completely misses the ball!

26 min: Zambia have managed to get a bit of possession over the last few minutes, and though they just went from side to side it will have benefitted them to have had a break from chasing Ghanaians.

23 min: Dede Andre effortlessly get in behind the Zmabian defence down the right and then pulls the ball back for Gyan, whose attempted shot is diverted by Sinkala.

21 min: A glimmer of an opening for Chansa, but Boye closes it off, showing his speed to get to Katongo’s through-ball first.

19 min: Ghana have taken control of this and Zambia are struggling to get out of their half.

16 min: Boys may not cry, but Boye might: if Ghana get to the final, he won’t play, as he’s just got booked for a ludicrous high tackle on Chansa.

14 min: After working a nice opening for Inkoom down the right, the full-back over-hits his cross. Dede Ayew retrieves it and is fouled at the edge of the area. The angle is too acute for a shot so Asamoah scoops it into the centre and Zambia clear.

12 min: Zambia look good going forward but rather panickey at the back. This game promises goals.

9 min: The Ayew brothers have plenty of space out wide in view of Zambia’s qutie narrow formation. But they can go through the middle too, via Gyan, who has just picked his way past two defenders and then fired a low shot from 25 yards that Mweene could only parry.

PENALTY to Ghana! Asamoah goes down easily … and then gets up to take the spotkick himself … and sees his low sidefooter palmed away by Mweene!

6 min: Kalaba pulls a corner out to the edge of the box, where Chamanga arrives at speed and let fly, but his shot is charged down.

3 min: The duel between Inkoom and Kalaba will be one of the most interesting features of this match and the Zambian has struck the first blow, dispossessing Inkoom before skipping pat two players and sending in a reasonable shot that gets deflected wide. There follows an admirably inventive corner routine which creates a shooting opportunity for Chamanga, who blasts over.

1 min: On a moist pitch the game gets going.

Share this post