23rd June, 2010
JOHANNESBURG (AFP) – So there we go, no last minute drama as we had earlier on in the USA game and both these teams progress, with Germany topping the group.
90+3 mins: FULL TIME! Ghana 0 Germany 1
90+1 mins: We enter the first of three added minutes, but you feel events elsewhere will decide Ghana’s fate now.
You really can’t beat these simultaneous final group games for raw tension. Ghana look spent here and are delending on Australia holding out. They nearly don’t as Serbia have a goal ruled out for a very close offside.
87 mins: I think news from Nelspruit has been transmitted onto the field as Ghana suddenly look a lot more eager. Muntari has a long-range effort over the top.
85 mins: Things seem to be winding down, I don’t know if Ghana know the score in the other game. Serbia have pulled one back, so maybe they should up the ante again.
81 mins: Asamoah Gyan is replaced by Matthew Amoah while Mesut Ozil is off and Toni Kroos is on for the Germans.
79 mins: Anthony Annan has a long-range shot easily saved but it looks like they will be through. In myÂ humble opinion, they both deserve it after their positive group performances.
76 mins: If only Ghana had a Drogba they could well be through already considering the number of chances they create. At the moment they have a two goal cushion over Australia. Another goal here or in Nelspruit would make nerves jangle.
72 mins: Ouch! Delay as Hans Sarpei gets on a ball right in the mush. Germany make another change,Â Marcell Jansen is brought on for Jerome Boateng.
Another goal for Australia. Both teams breathing quite easily, but they probably don’t know that on the pitch.
70 mins: News comes through that Australia have scored. Good news for both these teams, Serbia are the greater threat due to their goal difference.
68 mins: Piotr Trochowski is on for Thomas Muller. Cacau has a shot blocked by Mensah.
66 mins: Superb chance to level. Ayew runs onto a cute backheel but Lahm again is the man in the right place, deflecting the shot over the bar.
64 mins: Prince Tagoe is replaced by Sulley Muntari, who was almost sent home after a clash with the coach.
62 mins: Germany were applying some serious pressure and in the end it paid off. Ghana, sensing their precarious position, react strongly but can’t create any chances.
60 mins: GOAL! Ghana 0 Germany 1
There’s the answer! Mesut Ozil scores a superb goal, collecting Muller’s pull back before smashing an unstopable shot into the top corner from the edge of the area.
58 mins: This is a very young German team and it will be inteesting to see how they handle this situation. In truth they’ve played pretty well all competition yet could end up going home unless they find their famed killer instinct.
55 mins: It feels like this group is bursting with possibilities with chances being missed in both games.
51 mins: A glorious chance for Kwadwo Asamoah. He was clean through, the ball was sat up beautifully for him but he hit it too close to Neuer and the save was duly made.
49 mins: Frantic defending in the Ghana area from a corner, eventually the danger is cleared. It looks like nerves are beginning to set in already.
46 mins: And we are back for a crucial 45 minutes. Can Ghana hold out, or even snatch a winner?
2022 GMT: ITV pundit Marcel Desailly thinks Ghana “are the best African team we have seen,”Â and is rooting for the Black Stars.
Fellow-pundit Gareth Southgate doesn’t believe it hit Lahm’s arm, instead just his chest. I don’t agree with him.
A montage of Desailly through the first half shows a very animated man who clearly wants an African team through. Good to see.
A very lively, but scoreless half. It’s going to be a really nail-biting second-period. As things stand Ghana will play England and Germany will face USA in the second-round.
45+1 mins: HALF TIME! Ghana 0 Germany 0
A very lively, but scoreless half. It’s going to be a really nail-biting second-period. As things stand Ghana will play England and Germany will face USA in the second-round.43 mins: YELLOW CARD! It’s one-a-piece as Thomas Muller hacks down John Mensah. Both Ghana centre-backs are confusingly called John Mensah, this one is the Lyon no.5.
39 mins: YELLOW CARD! Dede Ayew is in the book for a tackle from behind on Cacau. A bit harsh as he got the ball, but he came through the man. A threatening free-kick conceded to boot.
One of those horrible deliveries which is destined for the far post, but which the keeper vcan’t commit to in case of a flick from defender or attacker. Kingson does well in the end to palm the ball away.
35 mins: Now then, now then.
Replays show that Lahm clearly handled the ball when he kept out Gyan’s header. It didn’t look like it at full speed and there weren’t many appeals but that should have been a penalty and sending off. It’s a good job Harry Kewell’s watching the Australia game as he would be hopping mad.
32 mins: A really vibrant start to this game. Both teams are really going for it, and goals look inevitable. Which way they will go is anyone’s guess.
Prince Boateng nearly rubs salt in German wounds as he gets in front of his marker to meet a cross but his contact is too thin.
30 mins: Cacau hits a first-time volley which is well controlled but not too difficult for Kingson to claim.
25 mins: This is getting hectic. Gyan meets a corner with Neuer flapping but captain fantastic Lahm clears off the line.
25 mins: Another real chance at the other end Mesut Ozil breaks the offside trap but hits his shot straight at Kingson with all the time in the world.
22 mins:Â A real opening for Andre “Dede” Ayew but he just takes too long and he is hustled off the ball.
20 mins: Philip Lahm breaks clear but gets a bit flustered in the area and has to settle for a corner.
17 mins: A couple of gems from AFP man on the streets of Accra, Aderogba Obisesan, who has been talking to some Black Stars’ fans.
â€œThe battle line has been drawn for the men to be separated from the boys. Only God knows the outcome of this evening’s match. I hope God will be a Ghanaian tonight,â€ says high school student James Akpo.
And…â€œI know the German machine will be at work in todayâ€™s match but we have the Ghanaian auto mechanics to drain the engine oil out of their machine to make it ineffective,â€ says Godfred Nortey, a local soccer analyst.
16 mins: Ghana really back in this. Gyan’s cross is cleared at full stretch.