After two 0:0 in the first
round of matches this group is more open than before. South Africa have
lost two points against Burkina Faso who now should be considered a realistic
threat by the three 'big' teams in this group. No decision in this group
will be mathematically final before the last match.
Since the draw South
Africa's odds at Sportsbooks to win the tournament have slumped after
they had started as one of the hottest favorites. This seems a bit unfair
as the South Africans displayed a well organised squad with a clear vision
of the game and only a problem in converting their chances. One reason
might have been the injury of number one striker Shaun Bartlett who will
be missing today as well.
Ghana have their own problems.
They have sent home their most profilic player, defender Samuel Kuffour
of Bayern Munich because of alleged interference with the team management
and undermining of authority.
It means the actual Ghana
team looks less experienced than ever. But the players are tested in vaious
African competitions and provided they can establish a team spirit should
not be underestimated.
South Africa go into the
match as 10/11 (decimal odds: 1.91) favorites, Ghana 11/4 (3.75), draw
about the new possibilities of betting on African matches
The match: The mystic
goal drought continues...
-('2) goal after a corner
for South Africa which is disallowed for unclear reasons
-Ghana begin agressive,
the pace is high but the match fragmented. Ghana conquer balls but cannot
establish a fluent passing game.
-many challenges, some
inaccurate passing, defenders rule. Pace is high and entertainment is low
- also thanks to a small crowd who only delivers a thin echo to the actions
-('30) Ghana: nice free
kick by Duah, over the bar
-('34) penalty for South
Africa, Mensah who is in physical contact with Fortune handles the ball.
Fortune's quite sharp low shot parried by Adjei , not easy.
-('37) Essien answers with
a frantic 25 meter curved shot that hits the goalframe
-('48) even at an 18 meter
free kick (Ghana) the defenders are too quick and the ball never sees the
-('49)('50) Two promising
attacks by South Africa- the second sees another save by Adjei. The Hearts
Of Oak keeper is one of the best on the line
-slowly the match becomes
more entertaining, especially Ghana are able to establish some more successful
-('58)('62) both teams,
in person Boateng and August with long range shots across the goal
-('63) fine curved shot
by Gyan saved
-('64) great solorun by
Boateng has penetrated into the red zone from the rght hand side through
a bunch of defenders and fires now from close range and a rescuing save
by the South African keeper Vonk with his foot
-a period follows in
which South Africa regains midfield balance, even slight dominance
-('74) error in the Ghanaian
defence: Buckley is all alone when a cross reaches him on the opposite
wing, he fires and Adjei saves
-there is more space
in midfield but defences have taken over again and allow only minor dangerous
-('injury time) McCarthy
blasts a long range free kick 5 meters high across the bar
-('injury time) suddenly
a last chance for Ghana but South Africa withstand
final score 0:0
South Africa have been a
little disappoimting. Unlike 1996 and 2000 there has been no logical winner
in this matchup. Ghana are a difficult team to defeat, strong in one on
one, but they are still far away from a goal spree. But they are now in
a quite good position in the group.
match data as published
by CAF Online:
Referee: Mourad Daami
Ass. Referees: Taoufik
Adjengui (TUN), Salah El Berry (EGY)
Attendance: 5 000
South Africa: 1-Hans
Vonk; 2-Mbulelo Mabizela, 3-Bradley Carnell, 13-Pierre Issa, 19-Aaron Mokoena,
21-Eric Tinkler, 7-Quinton Fortune (8- T. Mngomeni 60), 14-Siyabonga Nomvete
(11-bRadely August), 18-Delron Buckley, 15-Sibusiso Zuma, 17-Benni McCarthy
Ghana: 12-Sammy Adjei;
5-John Mensah, 14-George Blay, 15-Princeton Owusu-Ansah (Yaw Amankwah Mireku
72), 19-Kofi Amponsah (21-John Pantsil 81) , 20-Ibrahim Abdul Razak, 8-Michael
Essien, 16-Emmanuel Duah (9-Matthew Amoah 77), 17-Baffour Gyan, 10-Dereck
Boateng, 18-Ishmael Addo
Ghana: 16- E. Duah
(13), 5- J. Mensah (62), 8- M. Essien (72).
S. Africa: 7- Quinton
Fortune (36), 18- D. Buckley (38)