CHAN 2022: Black Galaxies secure crucial win

By Emmanuel Yaw Nkansah

With the hopes of Ghanaians weighing heavily on their shoulders, the Black Galaxies did not crumble and fall under the massive weight of expectations as they overcame their Sudanese opponents on a cold Thursday night in Constantine.

The triumph in their final Group C match played at the Stade Mohamed-Hamlaoui was one where the Galaxies showed grit, determination, and most importantly, a lethal touch in front of goal to defeat Sudan.

The Black Galaxies went on the attack right from the start of the game, launching waves of attacks as they sought to grab the opening goal. The Sudanese were well organised, however, a sharp contrast to the ‘vibes and inshallah’ play of their Ghanaian opponents, and kept them at bay quite easily.

31 minutes into the match, a fine finish from Al Gozoli Hussien Noah Mohamed to complete a rather brilliant Sudanese attack gave them the lead. Once again, it seemed as though the lack of organisation and cohesion in the Black Galaxies’ play was going to cost them yet again.

With the Galaxies trailing, Ghanaians would have been forgiven for thinking the match was going to be yet another stinker, which would see Ghana once again crash out of a continental tournament without managing to win a single match. That was not to be the case, as an attack in first-half injury time yielded a corner.

The resulting set-piece resulted in a chance for center-back Konadu Yiadom, who made no mistake and drew Ghana level. Somehow, the Sudanese were unable to get past the better performing yet still comparatively worse Ghanaians and were punished for that as Daniel Afriyie Barnieh was fouled in the penalty area and converted the resulting penalty in the 64th minute.

Growing in confidence and looking increasingly better as the game wore on, the Galaxies continued to press forward in search of a third goal to secure the win. In the 80th minute, it looked like Ghana had finally gotten the security they needed as Afriyie Barnieh scored again, but the goal was ruled out after a VAR review. The Sudanese were not out of contention yet as the underdogs kept finding spaces in the Ghanaian defense to exploit, but they were unable to convert those opportunities into a much-needed goal.

Afriyie Barnieh, who had been brilliant all match long, was sent off in the 97th minute after he received a straight red card after he apparently stomped on the shin of a Sudanese player. Emboldened by their numerical superiority, the Sudanese players poured forward in search of an equaliser and paid for their overconfidence as a swift counterattack by the Galaxies resulted in a third goal for Ghana from substitute Seidu Suraj.

A 3-1 victory for the Black Galaxies the final result after 90 minutes and joy for Ghanaians as this crucial victory means Ghana has one foot in the knockout rounds. As for whether qualification from the group has been secured, that will only be decided on Monday, January 23, when Sudan and Madagascar clash in the final match of the group which you can watch live on GTV Sports+.

Hopefully, the result of that match is favorable and allows the Black Galaxies to qualify for the knockout rounds.

 

 

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