AYC: Ghana Face Benin Test ‘Morrow


Sellas Tetteh and his players started their quest to reclaim the African Youth Championships on a sour note after losing 2-1 against Egypt.

The Satellites now have to win against tough opposition in Benin and hosts, Algeria, to make sure of a berth to the next round. A connection from the head of Mahmoud Hamad saw the Young Pharoahs take the lead soon after the hour mark.

Liberty Professionals prolific forward, Ebenezer Assifuah, continued his good form when he volleyed in the leveller six minutes after his side went behind.

The momentum swung the game Ghana’s way, but a moment of goalkeeping indiscretion put paid to Ghana’s efforts. With four left to finish the game, Ghana goalkeeper Eric Antwi brought down Mahmoud ‘Kahraba’. Saleh Gomaa stepped up to convert for three points.

Egypt boss Rabie Yassin had started the game with a 3-5-2, having Rio Ave’s tall forward Ahmed ‘Koka’ Hassan upfront.

Ramy Rabia, the sensation from Al Ahly, was huge in center back as he paired Ibrahim Yasser. In midfield, Saleh Gomaa, Ahmed Refaat and Mahmoud ‘Trezeguet’ Hassan were the key young men.

The Young Egyptians kept it tight, not leaving spaces for Ghana to exploit throughout the tie. The Satellites are thus bottom of Group A table after the first round of matches.

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Egypt U-20 coach Rabie Yassin has expressed his respect for the Ghana team despite defeating them.

“I have to greet the Ghana team. They played well and they have many good players,” Rabie Yassin said.

“Nevertheless about my team we were also good and I am so happy with them.”

“We played the first half very well but slacked off in the second and allowed them to score.

“However we found our second win and won the game. We deserved the three points before the Algeria clash and that will be very tough because it is a Northern African derby.

“We will do our best to win the three points and qualify to the second stage. We will start preparing for the Algeria match from Sunday.”