Cameroon are into the final of the African Nations Cup after a two nil win against Avram Grant’s Ghana.
Michael Ngadeu-Ngadjui took advantage of some evil defending from a free-kick to drill in the opener as late the 72nd minute of the game and Christian Bassogog finished the match off with seconds left on the clock when he purchased a delightful finish from an excellent counter attack by Cameroon.
Ghana went close through Wakaso Mubarak and Christian Atsu as Ghana enjoyed 57% of the possession had more shots and more corners than their opponents.
Panathinaikos midfielder Wakaso tested keeper Fabrice Ondoa will a fabulous bending free-kick that was almost worth the admission price alone while Newcastle United winger Atsu saw his angled strike drift past Cameroon’s post by inches.
Apart from those two chances, the Black Stars – who last won the competition in 1982 – underwhelmed against a Cameroon side that were clear underdogs going into the match.
Head coach Hugo Broos’ brave Lions are into their first final since they lost to Egypt as far back as 2008.
“It is a real dream for us to get to the final,” said the Belgian Broos’.
“Ghana have more experience than us – look at what they have done in recent tournaments. But since the start of this tournament we have shown we keep going right to the end in every game. “
“I am very happy, especially for the team. They are an exemplary group on and off the field and they deserve to be in the final.”
Cameroon were defiant at the back and looked from very early on that they would be difficult to get past along the wings in particular. At Gabon’s Franceville stadium they defended superbly for large segments of the game as their focus rarely wavered from the task in front of them.
They almost completely wiped out the threat of Andre Ayew and brother Jordan – and, later on, substitute Asamoah Gyan.
Slavia Prague defender Ngadeu-Ngadjui was both a rock in defence and a menace on set-pieces in attack, highlighted when he fired in from the angle to give his side the lead celebrating as if he’d just won the lotto jackpot which considering the precarious position the team were in just prior to the tournament with player dropping out of the squad and bonus fees either wiped out, insulting to the players and all those connected to Cameroon. On the pitch it was an entirely different matter altogether as the Lion’s really showed their pride and composure.
A free kick was swung into the area and both Ghana defender John Boye and goalkeeper Razah Brimah were hesitant at the delivery, allowing Ngadeu-Ngadjui to fire home.
As Ghana, coached by former Chelsea boss Avram Grant, searched for the equaliser they left space at the back, which was exploited in the third minute of stoppage time when Aalborg forward Bassogog sprinted into the area and poked in past the reach of Razak.
“I am more than unhappy. We wanted so much to be in the final,” said Grant who earlier in the competition had said he expected to lose his job even if Ghana won the final.
“We did everything to be there and in the second half we completely dominated. Congratulations to Cameroon of course but we were the better side and we lost.”