Boost for Black Maidens … Ahead of Finland clash today

Mukarama Abdulai - Black Maidens top scorer

Mukarama Abdulai – Black Maidens top scorer

Ghana’s female U-17 team, the Black Maidens, will face Finland today in their second group game at the ongoing Women’s U-17 FIFA World Cup in Uruguay.

The Maidens are on top of their group with three points after defeating host, Uruguay 5-0 in the first game on Tuesday and would hope to consolidate that feat with a second win to secure qualification to the next stage of the competition with a game to spare.

Finland lost 1-0 to New Zealand in their first game and would be hoping to get their first win in the competition as they face a very formidable Ghanaian side.

The maidens, following their brilliant display against Uruguay have been tipped as one of the favourites to win the competition for the first time.

It is in this view that the Minister for Youth and Sports, Isaac Asiamah has expressed optimism and has promised them a huge bonus if they lift the trophy at the end of the competition.

“With the level of confidence displayed by the Maidens in their first game, I am certain that they have what it takes to win the ultimate trophy,” the Minister stated.

Speaking to journalist at the sidelines of the launch of the Youth in Sports programme in Winneba on Wednesday, the Minister said, government would reward the Maidens bountifully if they are able to win the trophy.

“We urge the Maidens to win the trophy and government would reward them with a very attractive package for their efforts,” he stated.

He added that, the entire country was behind the team and would be provided with the needed support to lift the ultimate trophy.

This will come as a major boost for the Black Maidens who will be expected to put up an improved display against a Finnish side that is fully aware of the dangers that will accompany a second defeat.

They face a do-or-die situation against the Ghanaians who are mindful of the challenge to be posed by the New Zealanders in the final game and would want to win at all cost.

Mukarama Abdulai was at her devastating best on Tuesday, registering a hat-trick against the Uruguayan hosts. With her, the Maidens proved a formidable force in this year’s competition and if they are able to repeat that performance, then the Maiden would have a long way to go.

Ghana’s group opponents, Uruguay and New Zealand would also face off today with the host country eager to get their first wins.

Ghana would face New Zealand on Tuesday in their final group game while Finland and Uruguay square off in the other group game.

BY MICHAEL D. ABAYATEYE

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