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Sports News of Thursday, 11 September 2014

Source: GHANAsoccernet.com

Appiah's decision catapults Black Stars to victory

The decision by Ghana coach Kwesi Appiah to axe several starters from the Black Stars starting line-up in their 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Togo has brought the national team back to winning ways.

Appiah left out several players who were previously seen as untouchables in the Black Stars squad in the match against the Hawks in Kegue yesterday.

Goalkeeper Fatau Dauda, Rabiu Mohammed, Abdul Majeed Waris and Jeffery Schlupp were all left out of the starting team while injury to John Boye means he was also axed.

Dauda, who has been criticised in many quarters for his performances for the Black Stars, was replaced by Stephen Adams who did enough to justify his starting place.

Jordan Ayew took the place of Waris and his power threatened the Togolese defenders while the decision to play Kwadwo Asamoah in deep midfield in the place of Rabiu also brought the desired dividends.

Baba Abdul Rahman’s forays upfront shows that he can compete effectively for the left-back place after Schlupp was made to start from the bench in the match.

Awal Mohammed was towering in defence and brought the much-needed height at the heart of the defence which prevented the Togolese from running riot.

With Agyemang Badu starting in one of his rare starts for the Black Stars his goal perhaps justifies why he should be considered more often in matches for the national team.

Ghana notched their first win of their Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign, thanks to a late goal from Christian Atsu that gave them a 3-2 away victory over Togo.

Hosts Togo were in front through Floyd Ayite as early as the 12th minute before Asamoah Gyan pegged them back on 24 minutes.

Agyeman Badu gave The Black Stars the lead 10 minutes later as Tottenham Hotspur striker Emmanuel Adebayor headed the equaliser with 13 minutes remaining.

But the game was not over yet, with Atsu hitting the all-important goal five minutes from time to give Ghana, who failed to overcome Uganda at home days ago, their first win of Group E.