Ghana staged a remarkable comeback win to secure a place in next year’s Africa Cup of Nations in Ivory Coast after the Black Stars recovered from an early setback to beat Central African Republic 2-1 at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium on Thursday.
Ghana coach, Chris Hughton named Jordan Ayew as captain of the day with Elisha Owusu and Abdul Salis Samed partnering in midfield in Kumasi.
Mohammed Kudus was deployed behind Inaki Williams with Jordan Ayew and Osman Bukari playing on the wings.
The hardworking Alexander Djiku formed a solid pair with Joseph Aidoo in central defence as Alidu Seidu and Baba Rahman played as full backs.
Goduine Koyalipou was the first player to strike on target in the 18th minute but Lawrence Ati Zigi dealt with the situation with ease.
Central African Republic got the breakthrough in the 25th minute through Louis Mafouta, who rounded up Ati Zigi to slot home.
Mafouta received a beautiful pass from Amos Youga before slotting home the opener.
The Black Stars drew level few minutes to end the first half from Mohammed Kudus’ stupendous free-kick from the edge of the box which beat goalkeeper Geoffrey Lembet.
Antoine Semenyo later came on for Inaki Williams and his introduction yielded the desired results as he made the winning goal for Ghana.
Gideon Mensah, Ernest Nuamah and Baba Iddrisu made second half appearances in place of Baba Abdul Rahman, Osman Bukari and Elisha Owusu respectively.
Antoine came close to getting the second goal for Ghana, but his curled shot from close range was saved by goalkeeper Lembet in the 88th minute.
A few seconds later, Semenyo won a tussle with a defender before setting up youngster Ernest Nuamah, who tapped the ball into the back of the net for the match winner.
Semenyo nearly got his name on the scoresheet moments later, but his effort struck the side post to the relief of the visitors.
Late in the game, Mohammed Kudus got on the end of a sweet pass from Abdul Salis Samed but an appeal for a spot kick was ignored by the referee following what looked like a foul in the box.
After five minutes of added time, the referee whistled to bring proceedings to a close as Ghana cruised to a 2-1 win.
Ghana finished the campaign with 12 points and also as group winners, making it alongside Angola, who were second after six matches.
Credit: Ghana FA