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Partey and Ayew score in second half Ghana rally for massive win over Zimbabwe

The Ghana national side responded to criticism of their recent performances by finding the net on multiple occasions in their 3-1 FIFA World Cup qualifying home victory over Zimbabwe on Saturday. It was an ideal return to the coaching helm of the Black Stars for manager Milovan Rajevac, whose team remains close behind Group G leaders South Africa with only a point separating the two. Zimbabwe’s chances are all but elminated following the result, with one solitary point through three games leaving them six behind Bafana Bafana.

It was an electric start for the hosts in Cape Coast, with the Black Stars getting right to work by finding the opening goal in the 5th minute. Mohammed Kudus played a combination with Jordan Ayew and side footed his shot in between the legs of Zimbabwe defender Onismor Bhasera and past goalkeeper Washington Arubi for a morale boosting finish. Arubi was called into action just before the twenty minute mark Kamal Deen Sulemana cut back a cross to Kudus, whose effort was well saved by the Marumo Gallants shot stopper.

The remainder of the first half was rather uneventful and the action picked up furiously after halftime when Zimbabwe made their breakthrough. AFC Bournemouth defender Jordan Zemura burst down the left wing and put in a low cross for a streaking Knox Mutizwa, who appeared to be bundled over by Ghana center back Alexander Djiku and caused the referee to point to the penalty spot. Knowledge Musona made no mistake and dispatched a precise spot kick to the upper corner as keeper Jojo Wollacott dove the opposite way.

The leveler started a spell of real concern for Ghana as Musona was influential in trying to push the Warriors into a surprise lead on the road. The Al Taee forward dribbled towards the edge of the Ghanaian penalty area before a tackle sent the ball rolling to Zemura, who curled a beauty of a shot that beat Wollacott but bounced back off the woodwork. Musona was then sent in by a flicked header in the 64th minute and his blast was well fended off by Wollacott.

With the worry of the fans growing, Ghana star midfielder Thomas Partey delivered an excellent individual play to spark the Black Stars back into a winning position. Stealing the ball from a misplay committed by a Zimbabwe defender, Partey strode into the penalty area before applying a cool low finish past Arubi to get the home crowd energized again. The go ahead goal could not have come at a better time as Zimbabwe were showing real belief that they could get the full three points on the road.

Late on it was another team leader in André Ayew who provided the finishing touch for the hosts. Substitute striker Benjamin Tetteh received a throw in from left back Baba Rahman before laying back to the Reading FC player, who whipped in a beauty of a cross that found Ayew at the far post for a bouncing header to beat Arubi and seal the three points.

Highlights of the win are in the link below. Ghana will travel to Zimbabwe for the second match in the doubleheader with their eyes on another three points.

Highlights from FIFA TV



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