Stars in narrow win over Togo

Lone goal-scorer, Bernard Mensah (13) in a midfield action in yesterday's match             Photos: Seth Osabukle

Lone goal-scorer, Bernard Mensah (13) in a midfield action in yesterday’s match Photos: Seth Osabukle

The Black Stars of Ghana yesterday put up an average performance to beat Togo 1-0 in a friendly match played at the Accra Sports Stadium.

A 35th minute thunderous strike from debutant Bernard Mensah was enough to give the Stars a boost, ahead of their 2017 AFCON qualifier against Mauritius.

Ghana began the game on a very bright note as Majeed Warris almost scored in the sixth minute after benefiting from a cross by Baba Rahman.

The Togolese then settled into the game and composed themselves well, especially at defence to unsettle the Black Stars.

Players like Christian Atsu and Rahman after a blistering start of the game, later became very wasteful and gave balls away easily to their opponents.

After scoring later, the stars held on to their lead till recess though the Togolese created a few chances on their own, but excellent defence from John Boye ensured that the lead was maintained.

The second half saw a better performance from the Stars following the introduction of six players, including Skipper Asamoah Gyan, Jordan Ayew, Jeffery Schlupp, Agyemang Badu and Afriyie Acquah.

Badu brought some pace into the midfield as he combined with splendid Wakaso to outrun and outskill the Togolese.

The two made several moves which almost gave Ghana another goal, but the Togolese defence maintained their composure and ensured they did not concede any.

But the game did not end well for Wakaso as he was shown a straight red card for a hash tackle on Komlan Amewou.

The Togolese almost had an equalizer in the 75th minute through substitute Aldenouvo Backer, when he dribbled into the Ghana goal area and lashed in a shot that hit the cross bar.

The strike sent shivers into the spine of goal keeper Fatau Dauda who was almost on a holiday during the game.

Backer was inspirational for Togo as he single-handedly threatened the goal area of Ghana. Lack of support, however denied the togolese a goal.

The red for Wakaso meant Togo were handed an advantage but failed to make use of it as Ghana goalkeeper Fatau Dauda produced his most convincing performance in recent times to close the game.

Referee Abdulahi added an extra two minutes to the 90 minutes played, but both sides failed to take full advantage of the time added and the game ultimately ended 1-0 in favour of the Ghanaian

By Michael D. Abayateye

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