Gabon Stretch Satellites To A Draw

SATELLITESThe Junior Panthers of Gabon yesterday held the national U-20 side the Black Satellites to a goalless drawn game in the first leg qualifier for next year’s African Youth Championship slated for Dakar, Senegal.

The Gabonese played a very tactical game to frustrate the Ghanaian frontline spearheaded by Propser Kasim, Joseph Adjei and Yaw Yeboah who appeared clueless to the tactical disposition of the visitors.

Winger Yeboah with only four minutes into the game had a glorious opportunity to put the Satellites ahead after being put through by Samuel Tetteh on the left flank but shot feebly into the arms of Apaya Ngoumba in post for the Panthers.

Six minutes later, it was Tetteh’s turn to miss a clear goal scoring opportunity. With only the goalkeeper at his mercy he shot into the side net leaving the Gabonese off the hook.

The initial one-sided game saw the Ghanaian’s hit the crossbar in the 30th and 32nd minutes of the game through Yeboah and Thomas Agyepong, while the resultant rebounds from left much to be desired.

The Gabonese who were growing stronger into the game after the initial scare by the Ghanaians, turn defense into attack as striker Lessa Locko in the 39th minute forced Ghana’s goalkeeper Mutawakilo Seidu to make a one hand save that nearly went past him.

Black Satellites midfielder Tetteh could have broken the deadlock on the stroke of half time but he reacted a little late to a well driven 30 yarder free kick from skipper of the side, Joseph Owusu Bempah, allowing Ngoumba all the time to make a double save on that effort.

Back from recess, the Ghanaians continued their search for the opener and with coach Sellas Tetteh bringing on Kennedy Boateng, Eric Kumi and Benjamin Tetteh for Latif Abubakar, Agyepong and  Adjei but tried as they did their effort did not result in any goal.

The Satellites who are the current African runners up after losing to Egypt in the finals of the 2013 edition in Algeria, will fly to the Gabonese capital of Libreville in a fortnight’s with high hopes of earning a vital away point to qualify for the tournament next year.

In a post match interview, head coach Tetteh said all was not lost and that he would work on the team and makes some few technical changes to the side ahead of the second leg and was optimistic the team will surely make it to Senegal 2015.

Team captain Owusu Bempah apologized to the fans for not grabbing a win in the game but however promised he together with his colleagues and the technical team will work very hard and make sure they qualify.

By Raymond Ackumey

 

 

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