Ghana 1-0 Madagascar: The Importance of Today’s Win To Inaki Williams – READ
Inaki Williams celebrates his goal
The Black Stars took all three points against Madagascar at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium on Friday at the death.
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After struggling to find the net for the most part, Iñaki Williams rose highest to a cross in injury time to get his first-ever goal in a Black Stars shirt.
The Black Stars are now second in Group I with three points, below Comoros on goal difference.
Here are five things we learned.
Fans still have love for Black Stars
30 minutes before the game started, there were a bunch of empty seats, creating a perception that the love for the senior national team had plummeted.
And there was good reason for that perception. Chris Hughton’s side had suffered back-to-back losses in the previous international window, causing an outrage in Ghana.
But this changed when the game started, with a hefty number of supporters trooping in and cheering the Black Stars on, especially in the second half.
The team now have to reward the undying support with victories, just like they did earlier on Friday.
Poor start, improved second half
It was one of the worst first-half performances from the Black Stars. Just one shot on target in the first 45 with the team looking out of sorts.
Madagascar on the other hand had 55% possession and barely looked like the away team in the first period.
After bringing Majeed Ashimeru and Denis Odoi on in the second half, the hosts played like a different team, with the lion’s share of possession and six more shots on target.
Fortunately, they managed to grab the win. However, they would need to improve in subsequent games.
Salis and Iddrisu Baba should never play together
Chris Hughton made some surprising calls against Madagascar and one of them was surely pairing Salis Samed and Iddrisu Baba together.
The duo have similar midfield profiles. They are both known to pick safe passes overtaking more risks, different from what Thomas Partey offers.
This decision meant Ghana struggled to create good opportunities and could only muster a shot on target in the first half.
One of them can pair with a more progressive midfielder. But using both in a home game is a recipe for disaster.
Richard Ofori had a decent game
The biggest surprise in Chris Hughton’s starting eleven today was Richard Ofori, a man who has made just three appearances this season.
There were fears that his perceived rustiness would ultimately cost the team. However, for the most part, the former Wa All Stars shot-stopper performed admirably.
He still has more to prove in the coming days or months with Lawrence Ati Zigi and Jojo Wollacott waiting in the wings.
Inaki Williams finally ends the drought
Fans were displeased with the performance from the hosts, particularly in the first half. But not many of them had a go at Iñaki Williams.
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The Athletic Bilbao forward showed hunger throughout the game; making dangerous runs, taking people on and choosing the right options in advanced situations.
Fortunately, he brought an end to the goal drought that lasted 11 games. With the first goal out of the way, he could go on a goalscoring run.”
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