Ghana’s Under-17 team, the Black Starlets, on Sunday beat its Gambian counterpart, Young Scorpions, 3-1 in the first leg qualifying series for the 2009 Africa Under-17 football championship in Algeria.
In the match, played at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in Kumasi, Ghana scored first in the 11th minute through Bright Addae, when he headed home a free kick from Fatau Mohammed.
But the Gambians equalised three minutes later, when Sahiour Gassamah headed into the yawning net from Fansu Simaka’s cross from the left flank, with goalkeeper James Alhassan sprawling in vain to make a save.
The Starlets increased the tally in the 53rd minute through a spot kick by Moro Ibrahim, after the ball had hit the hand of a defender who was attempting to save a dangerous situation in the box.
The determined Gambians fought hard to equalize, but the defence of the Ghanaians refused to budge, even as the visitors continued to probe for more goals.
Gambia conceded a second penalty in the 83rd minute, when Ebo Ando was brought down in the box by a Gambian defender, Lamine Samateh.
Ibrahim once again scored to complete the rally.
Guinea – Benin
Guinea’s Under-17 national football team on Sunday in in Conakry pipped its Beninese counterpart 1-0 in the first leg of the final qualfying series for the 2009 African Under-17 football championships.
Karamokoba Kéita scored the loner via a 35-metre shot in the 49th minute.
The return leg will be played in two weeks in Cotonou.