Istanbul—Ghana’s “Triple A” thrashed Iraq to clinch the 3rd spot of FIFA’s U-20. Adding more honor to the squad is Ebenezer Assifuah who won the coveted Golden Boot Award for scoring the most goals in the tournament.
Iraq showed its dominance early in the match. The Young Lions of Messopotamia had several attempts in the 5th minute. However, none of their efforts were duly converted, much to the disappointment of its supporters.
Aware of Iraq’s failed attempts, the Black Satellites patiently took their time and on the 35th, Joseph Attamah broke Ghana’s half an hour silence when he scored a header off Moses Odjer’s corner.
Iraq pressed to get even and pull off an equalizer. However, just when the first half was about to end, Assifuah doubled Ghana’s lead.
The second half saw another scoring attack from the Young Lions. Ali Adnan rose up to the challenge and began to target the net. However, Richmond Nketiah, spotting Adnan’s motive, denied him at once.
Unwilling to wave the white flag, Ammar Abdulhessein lead another scoring rally for Iraq. Yet, his aggressiveness simply landed the ball into the Ghanian side. Iraq was running out of time and true enough, by the 78th, Frank Acheampong scored Ghana’s final and winning shot in the tournament.
Ghana’s victory can be considered as one of FIFA’s Cinderella stories. After surviving a death-defying qualifier, it trampled Portugal and Chile, but succumbed to France. Nevertheless, although Sellas Tetteh and his men failed to defend its 2009 crown, still, the Black Satellites remained true to the promise of giving something to Mother Ghana that she can be proud of.