Bafana lose to Black Stars in Afcon 2021 qualifier
Bafana Bafana's qualification campaign for the Afcon 2021 got off to a losing start in Cape Coast last night.
Bafana Bafana were outplayed 2-0 by a Ghana team inspired by the Ayew brothers in Cape Coast.
In front of a packed stadium, the visitors conceded a goal in each half and showed little sign of ever reducing the deficit.
Ghana were dominant from the outset, earning early free kicks and corners that heaped pressure on a sluggish Bafana defence.
Jordan Ayew looked threatening throughout the match and started as early as the 11th minute when his neat flick inside the box didn't find its target.
Ghana dominated possession for most of the match and were able to launch regular attacks. In contrast, South Africa's best chance came to Bradley Grobler in the 16th minute, but he skied his shot from the edge of the six-yard box.
Eventually, in the 36th minute, Ghana got the breakthrough they were searching for when Thomas Partey took a long-range shot from outside the box and found the back of the net somehow. The ball looked within Ronwen Williams' reach but the goalkeeper was wrongfooted and couldn't lay a hand on it.
Bafana went into the break knowing they were up against a determined Black Stars team.
Ghana picked up in the second half where they left in the first. They piled on the pressure once again and starved the South African midfield of any meaningful possession.
Bafana were hopeful of an equaliser when Percy Tau attempted a rare run down the right-hand side early in the second half. But it was shortlived and the normal service of Ghana domination resumed.
The Ayew brothers were the stand out performers in this match, and persisted in their assault on the Bafana defence, coming close on several occasions, including a header by Andre Ayew in the 71st minute.
A wonder strike by Mohammed Kudus snuffed out any hope Bafana had of an equaliser. Kudus evaded two defenders before blasting the ball into the top right corner; this time giving the keeper no chance.