2022 World Cup: Ghana hold Nigeria in Abuja to qualify on away goal
The Black stars of Ghana qualified for the FIFA 2022 world cup in Qatar thanks to a crucial away goal in Abuja.
Otto Addo’s men earlier held Super Eagles to a goalless draw in Kumasi and have now qualified for the global showpiece after drawing 1-1 with Nigeria in the second leg of their qualifying match.
Nigeria’s coach Augustine Eguavoen made five changes to the team that played in Kumasi last Friday, while Ghana coach Otto Addo kept the same lineup.
The first 45 minutes at the Moshood Abional National Stadium were action-packed, with Francis Uzoho making a huge error that handed Ghana her first goal in the 10th minute.
Thomas Partey of Arsenal fired a powerful shot from outside the penalty area, sneaked it under the Omonia Nicosia shot-stopper and into the net.
Nigeria immediately responded to the first goal, earning a penalty in the 19th minute after Ademola Lookman was brought down by Dennis Odoi.
The foul was initially waved off by the Tunisian referee, but it was overturned after a VAR review.
Captain William Troost-Ekong took the penalty, which he converted to bring Augustine Eguavoen’s team level.
Osimhen had the ball in the back of the net four minutes after the half-hour mark after connecting to a through-ball from Leon Balogun, but the VAR ruled it out for offside.
The Super Eagles started the second half on a high note, with Abdullahi Shehu replacing Onyeka, but they were unable to break down a tenacious Black Stars defense.
Lookman was replaced by Moses Simon in the 61st minute, while Ahmed Musa and Odion Ighalo came on in the 78th minute to replace Oghenekaro Etebo and Emmanuel Dennis, respectively.
Osimhen kept Ghana’s defense on their toes, but his backheel attempts failed to beat goalkeeper Joe Wollacott on two occasions.
Ghana will now make their fourth World Cup appearance, since 2014, while the Super Eagles will have to wait for their seventh.