Friday, July 2, 2010

Black Stars Denied Historic Semi Final Place

It was not a quality match. Surely not. What it was, it was a competitive match. Ghana played without fear and got the opening goal. Uruguay then stepped up their game and through the excellent Diego Forlan, they got their coveted goal. Once both teams were tied at 1-1, it was a tense match all the way. One goal, one opportunity would have sealed it.

A late late injury time Ghana attack caused panic in the Uruguayan defence, one unavoidable Luis Suarez handball later, Asamoah Gyan stepped up with the chance to be Africa's hero in extra time. And he struck the crossbar!! Penalties were needed to decide this extremely tough match.

Ghana were woeful at penalties, most likely affected by big Gyan's earlier miss. That disbelief spread through the penalty takers and Ghana failed to convert two. Sebastian Abreu then approached the spot and chipped the ball past the sprawling Kingson.

Unwittingly, Luis Suarez' deliberate handball won La Celeste this absorbing match. There is a price to pay though, Suarez would have relished a semifinal meeting against the country in which he built his burgeoning reputation. Without him, Uruguay will find it hard to beat the Oranjemen.

Though he led the line bravely for Ghana, the fragile state of Gyan will surely mean that he will retire for good from international football after the heartbreaking finish. He looked inconsolable after the shoot-out. The potential loss of Diego Lugano will also hurt La Celeste defensively. Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder are looking forward to the semifinal showdown.

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