The Black Satellites of Ghana are champions of the Africa U-20 Cup of Nations for the fifth time following a 2-0 victory over tournament debutants Uganda on Saturday in time for the country’s Independence Day celebrations. It was a composed and efficient performance that featured the strong defense and goalkeeping that helped separate the Ghanaians from the rest of the pack. 16-year-old star Abdul Fatawu played a role once again by assisting team captain Daniel Afriyie to score the opener from a corner-kick and initiating the attack that led to Ghana’s second goal.
It could have been a different story when an inspired Uganda side came out with purpose in the opening five minutes. An aerial ball got over the top of Ghana’s defense and tournament top scorer Derrick Kakooza was through on goal in a familiar position. However the Police FC forward looped his effort over Ghana goalkeeper Ibrahim Danlad as well as the crossbar. Ghana then were incredulous to see two efforts from an 11th minute corner-kick rattle off the Ugandan goal’s woodwork twice in quick succession.
The Ugandans were not so lucky on a later Ghanaian set piece in the first half when they failed at basic defending. Allowing Afriyie to sneak in at the near post, Fatawu’s pacey corner-kick was easily flicked in with the Hippos asleep on duty. Uganda tried to get back in the match but couldn’t dominate the midfield as effectively as in previous matches, failing to generate regular opportunities.
Soon after the break Fatawu was at it again to help Ghana clinch the title in the 51st minute. The playmaker dispossessed Steven Sserwadda in the center of midfield and drove an excellent ball to a breaking Percious Boah. Boah’s cross was unfortunately for Uganda deflected right into the path of Afriyie at the far post to smash home from close range. Ghana successfully played the rest of the match out to earn the trophy and begin celebrations throughout the country. Highlights are below.