The Ghana national U-20 women’s team, the Black Princesses have taken intermission from the hustle and bustle of camping after beating Ethiopia’s U-20 women’s team over the two legs of the last round of the World Cup qualifiers to secure a ticket for a slot in the final tournament in Costa Rica.
The Black Princesses have been camping at the Ghanaman Centre of Excellence at Prampram since August 2021, and have since played a total of six (6) matches to secure qualification.
Coach Ben Fokuo’s side entered the qualifiers in the second round, where they were paired against Mauritania. However, Mauritania withdrew and the Black Princesses had a walkover into the third round of the qualifying phase where they faced Zambia.
In the third round, the Princesses drew goalless against Zambia in Lusaka at the Nkoloma Stadium before returning home to defeat Zambia by 1-0 at the Cape Coast sports stadium, thanks to a 35th minute strike from the then Hasaacas Ladies forward, Evelyn Badu. The team advanced to the fourth round of the qualifiers with 1-0 goal aggregate over Zambia to set up a tie against Uganda.
It was an easy run for the Black Princesses in the fourth round as they progressed over Uganda with 7-1 goal aggregate. At the St. Mary’s Stadium-Kitende in Entebbe, Uganda, the Princesses triumphed with 1-2 victory, thanks to goals from Salamatu Abdulai and Grace Animah. Uganda striker Fauzia Najjemba got an 86sth minute consolation but there was no time for them to level the score. The return leg at the Cape Coast sports stadium never got any better for the Ugandans as Ben Fokuo’s girls subjected them to a 5-0 humiliating scoreline. A brace from Doris Boaduwaa and a goal each from Evelyn Badu, Salamatu Abdulai and Rahama Jafaru posed too much questions which their Ugandan counterparts found no answers to.
The team progressed to the fifth and last phase of the qualifying round after the 7-1 aggregate win over Uganda, where they were scheduled to face Ethiopia to battle it out for the ticket to the World Cup in Costa Rica which commences in August this year.
At the fifth round, the Princesses still stood strong, beating Ethiopia by 0-3 in Addis Ababa at the Abebe Bikila stadium in the first leg, with a brace from Abdulai Salamatu and a goal from Cecilia Nyama. They returned home to complete the mission with a 2-1 victory at the Accra sports stadium with yet another brace from Abdulai Salamatu, before Mesay Temesgen pulled back a consolation.
Overall, the Black Princesses played six matches, won five (5) and drew one (1). After the six matches, Abdulai Salamatu emerged Ghana’s top scorer with six (6) goals out of Ghana’s total of 13.
It must be noted however, that Ghana (the Black Princesses) were among the 24 teams that received standbyes, and did not play in the first round of the qualifiers. The team has broken camp and the players and technical team leave for home to rest.
The 2022 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup will be staged in Costa Rica from 10-28, August, 2022.