TOTAL AFCON U-20 FINALS (Saturday March 6)
FULL TIME Ghana 2-0 Uganda ( Daniel Afriyie Barnieh 21’ 51′ )
Ghana U20 Football team have been crowned Champions of the 2020 Africa U20 Cup of Nations after beating the Uganda Hippos 2-0 on Saturday at Stadium Olympique, Nouakchott, Mauritania.
Skipper Daniel Afriyie led from the front and was the star man of the day with goals in each half as Ghana clinched the fourth AFCON U20 title, and a first since in 2009.
The Hippos who enjoyed a debut appearance to the tournament coincidentally lost the trophy to Ghana in a repeat of the 1978 AFCON Final where the Uganda Cranes also lost to Ghana Black stars.
Despite an inspiring start in the first minutes of the game, Hippos forward Derrick Kakooza squandered a great opportunity when his lobbed shot failed to find the net.
The Ghanaians who qualified for the knockout round as best third placed team in the group stages looked to have come fully prepared for the Hippos as they looked to gift their country with a stunning Independence day gift.
After trumping an attack on to the hippos, Ghana took the lead in the 21st minute when skipper Daniel Barnieh sneaked into space at the near post before applying a small touch ahead of Bobosi Byaruhanga to beat goalkeeper Jack Komakech.
Afriyieh would then complete his brace on the day after reacting fastest onto Abdul Fatawu Issahaku’s deflected cross and then slotting below Komakech 6 minutes after the restart.
Uganda coach Morley Byekwaso went for a change in formation, Ivan Bogere and Samuel Senyonjo coming on for the off color Richard Basangwa and Ivan Asaba. With the change, Senyonjo joined Kakooza upfront for a twin-striking option.
Bogere was lively after coming on and he should have had a goal to his name in the 70th minute when the ball graciously landed on him inside the box, but his shot on the turn was too week, keeper Danlad Ibrahim collecting with ease.
Uganda kept the hunt for the two goals, but couldn’t crack to score with Ghana seeing out the result for a jubilant end to a happy Independence Day.
Hippos forward Derrick Kakooza finished top scorerof the tournament with 5 goals despite failing to find the net in today’s final.
This was Uganda’s first major final since the 1978 Africa Cup of Nations where the Cranes coincidentally lost to Ghana.
Uganda Starting XI: Jack Komakech (GK), Garvin Kizito Mugweri (C), Aziz Kayondo, Musa Ramathan, Kenneth Ssemakula, Bobosi Byaruhanga, Isma Mugulusi, Steven Sserwadda, Derrick Kakooza, Ivan Asaba, Richard Basangwa
Ghana Starting XI: Danlad Ibrahim, Philemon Baffour, Frank Kwabena Assinki, Uzair Alhassan, Samuel Abbey-Ashe Quaye, Emmanuel Essiam, Patrick Mensah, Abdul Fatuwa Issahaku, Percious Boah, Daniel Afriyie Barnieh, Mohammed Sulemana