Stars fail to shine in Saudi

14 years ago

A tiring Ghana side found its strength really sapped, as Saudi Arabia stepped up the tempo to win a friendly on Tuesday with a higher scoreline one might least have expected.

On a night when the Black Stars failed to shine and by their high standards, a 5-0 loss to Saudi Arabia was an unexpected pre-match prediction but surprisingly, that was the outcome at King Fahad stadium.

The Black Stars, played the last seven minutes of the game with only ten men after midfielder, Anthony Annan had been sent off for picking a second yellow card on the night.

Ghana kicked off strongly coming closer to finding the back of the net but the host caught the Black Stars on the counter and slotted in two goals before the 26th minute mark.

Goals from Yasser Al-Qahtani and S. Kearairi gave the host a comfortable lead as they ended the half 2-0 up.

Six minutes in the second half, Yasser Al-Qahtani scored his second in the 51st minute to make 3-0 before A. Harthi struck from the spot kick six minutes later to increase the tally.

Then on the stroke of full time, R. Tukar also got his name on the scorecards and he slotted in from a controversial spotkick.

Ghana coach, Claude Le Roy made a host of substitutions bringing on Junior Agogo, Prince Tagoe, Nana Akwasi Asare, Andre Ayew and Ahmed Barusso for Matthew Amoah, Eric Addo, Hans Adu Sarpei, Laryea Kingston and Francis Dickoh.

Tuesday’s game formed part of the Black Stars’ build towards next year’s African Cup of Nations to be hosted by Ghana.

This was the second game for the Black Stars in three days after beating Morocco 2-0 in a similar exercise in the French of Rouen on Saturday.

By virtue of being host of the 2008 African Cup of Nations finals, Ghana would not be playing any competitive match until January 2008, when the tournament kicks off in Accra.

Ghana line up: Line up: Richard Kingson, John Painstil, Illiasu Shilla, Dickoh/Ahmed Barusso, Hans Adu Sarpei/Nana Akwasi Asare, Laryea Kingston/Andre Ayew, Anthony Annan, Michael Essien, Eric Addo/Prince Tagoe, Sulley Muntari, Mathew Amoah/Junior Agogo