World Cup 2010 Fixtures & Results
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An early strike by Kevin-Prince Boateng has given Ghana a half-time lead over the United States in their last-16 clash.
With a quarter-final showdown with Uruguay awaiting either nation, both teams went on an early charge to find the go-ahead goal in what was an open, free-flowing contest.
It was Clint Dempsey who had the first shot on target for the US after four minutes when he rifled in an ambitious 25-yard shot straight to Richard Kingson. But 60 seconds further up the field, Ghana surged into the lead against the run of play.
Ricardo Clark lost possession for the Americans right on the halfway line and Kevin-Prince Boateng darted forward almost unchallenged before drilling a low shot right on the edge of the area into the bottom corner past Tim Howard.
Ghana immediately grew in confidence as they completely dominated proceedings after the goal. Andre Ayew and Samuel Inkoom were constantly presented with acres of space down both wings on numerous occasions as the US struggled to close down their opponents.
The Black Stars had their next chance on 18 minutes when Asamoah Gyan curled in a freekick from 20 yards out but Tim Howard was equal to the task with a clean punch. The USA finally caused some real panic in the opposition goal on 22 minutes when Landon Donavon released Michael Bradley through on goal down the left channel, but his cross-cum-shot was easily saved by Kingson.
The Stars And Stripes continued to struggle to find any meaningful rhythm and coach Bob Bradley was forced to make a tactical change just half an hour into the match as Maurice Edu came on for Ricardo Clark. Boateng tested Howard again with a rasping low drive.
The change seemed to work a treat as the US carved out their best chance of the game just four minutes later. Dempsey slipped in a through ball to Robbie Findley who tried to stroke it in at the near post, but Kingson made a superb kick-save.
Straight to the other end, Ghana had an identical chance. Jay DeMeritt allowed a long clearance from the back to bounce over him and Kwadwo Asamoah latched onto it, but his low drive was smothered by Howard at his near post.
Asamoah then blazed wildly over after being teed up by a clever backheel from Boateng but Ghana were still able to head into the break with the advantage.