Ghana’s U-17 Women’s National football team, the Black Maidens are one match away from qualifying to the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup 2022 to be staged in India, after humbling Morocco by 2-0 at the Accra sports stadium in the first leg of the fourth and last round of the qualifying phase on Friday.
Coach Baba Nuhu’s girls took off with a high spirited start against Morocco with the mentality of scoring as many goals as they can so as to make the second leg a mere formality in Morocco, considering the might of the Moroccans throughout the qualifiers.
Ghana made it to the fourth round of the qualifiers after completing a 10-1 aggregate win over Guinea, whiles Morocco did similar with 18 goals aggregate to make it to this final round against Ghana.
At the Accra sports stadium on Friday afternoon, the Black Maidens started the game with determination, but Morocco proved the side to beat in the first few minutes of the game. In the 15th minute into the first half, Ghana’s Success Ameyaa came close with a lovely strike outside the box but had her effort saved.
The surge went on and three minutes later, Stella Nyamekye fired a beautiful shot to put the Maidens in front. The Maidens came close again to finding their second, but Rashida Shahadu’s chance to double the lead for the host was flagged offside in the 23rd minute. The scoreline remained 1-0 in favour of Ghana till the half time whistle was blown.
Back from the recess, Stella Nyamekye striked twice on target in the 52nd and 60th minute looking for the second goal for Ghana, but the brilliance of Morocco’s goalkeeper aided her to save both shots. Coach Nuhu made a substitution in the 64th minute when he pulled out Success Ameyaa, making way for Linda Sarfoa Mintah.
The Black Maidens won a free kick in the 65th minute, which was wonderfully converted by star girl Nancy Amoh to give Ghana a 2-0 lead. In the 67th minute of the game, Ghana made a second substitution when Mary Amponsah was introduced to replace Princess Owusu. Coach Nuhu effected another change in the 82nd minute by bringing on Abdul Rashid Faiza to replace Rashida Shahadu to give his side fresh energy.
Nancy Amoh sent in a long strike looking for a brace but her strike hits the post, with just 4 minutes to end of the 90 minutes. No further goals were scored by either side as the referee brought the game to an end after 90+3 minutes additional time. The Black Maidens won by 2-0 going into the second leg.
The 2022 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup tournament has been scheduled to take place between 11 and 30th October this year.