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Africa Cup of Nations
January 20, 2013
• Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth
Referee: D. Bennett
• Attendance: 7000
E. Agyemang-Badu 40'
K. Asamoah 49'
M. Mputu 53'
D. Mbokani 69'
That's right. There is more action from Port Elizabeth this evening as Niger take on Mali in the second of Group B's double header. As for this afternoon's game, that's your lot folks.Thanks for joining me, Harry Slavin, and be sure to stick to Goal.com for all your African Cup of Nations news and coverage, including tonight's action from the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
So we finally have the opening goals in this years African Cup of Nations and we've had all the excitement, flair and creativity that yesterday's opening round of fixtures lacked. And do you know what the best part is? There's yet more action this evening!
FULL TIME: GHANA 2-2 CONGO DR. What a comeback from Claude Le Roy's who deservedly wrestled back a point from their opening Group B encounter. The Black Stars on the other hand will be less thrilled with the outcome having surrendered a two goal lead.
90' + 5'
And that's it! A frenetic last 5 minutes but it finishes 2-2.
90' + 4'
THAT WAS THE CHANCE! A deep cross from the right is met by Gyan at the back post who fires a header goalwards. The ball is held by Kidiaba whose feet are behind the line but the ball isn't.
90' + 3'
Chance up the other end now as Dauda does well to read Dioko's cross and claim it before it reaches Mbokani. A couple of minutes remaining. End to end stuff...
90' + 2'
Corner for Ghana but Wakaso's delivery is headed away at the front post. Both sides are pushing here.
90' + 1'
We're into 5 minutes of stoppage time at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium. Can either side find a winner?
But Kasusula wastes the dead ball situation by clearing the bar with his cross.
Dioko wins a free-kick for Congo DR on the right edge of the penalty area. This is a chance...
At the moment it looks as though Congo DR are the more likely to create that chance. Mulumbu has sprung to life after 80 minutes of anonymity but his ball across the box can't find a team mate.
Ghana look out of ideas an completely despondent having thrown away their two goal advantage. Can they muster one last chance?
WHAT A SAVE FROM DAUDA! The only danger when you push on is that you leave space at the back and that's exactly what Ghana have done there. Substitute Dioko picks out Mulumbu on the edge of the 'D' and his placed effort has to be tipped behind at full stretch by Dauda.
Final Substitution of the game as Harrison Afful comes on for Adomah. Asamoah pushes further forward for Ghana now as they look for a late winner.
Inside the last ten minutes now as Youssouf Mulumbu tries to play through Mbokani. The West Brom player has been kept fairly quiet this afternoon but he wont care if Congo DR can hold onto this.
That was a little more comfortable for the Congo keeper as he collects John Paintsil's long throw in unchallenged after a flick on at the near post.
Kidiaba is down receiving treatment after almost being caught out by a cross. That was almost a little embarrassing for the Congo 'keeper.
A couple of subsitutions for Congo DR as well as Le Roy sends on Peterborugh's Gabriel Zakuani and Mukok Kanda in place of LuaLua and Cedric Mongongu.
Ghana make another substitution as Anothony Annan comes on fro Derek Boateng. Just over 15 minutes left for either side to find a winner. Can Congo DR complete an unprecedented comeback?
Kidiaba's celebration was as bizarre as it was brilliant as he shuffles around the penalty area on his backside. He's back up on his feet though and called into action as Asamoah Gyan forces the 'keeper into a smart stop. That was going in.
MBOKANI SCORES!!!! Astonishing comeback from Congo DR as Mbokani sends his spot kick into the top right hand corner. It's 2-2 and Congo keeper Kidiaba shows his delight with a must see celebration.
PENALTY TO CONGO!! Mbokani is felled by Akaminko moments after substitute Rabiu could have put Ghana 3-1 ahead...
The action is becoming pretty stretched here, the Black Stars are beginning to find space in the opposition's half. More goals could be on the way here.
Good chance wasted by Ghana. Paintsil plays the ball down the right to send away Adomah and he finds Gyan who's hot is bravely blocked by Mabiala. Ghana want a penalty for handball but replays show it was a fantastic piece of defending.
Bad tackle from Kasusula who comes in late and hard on Adomah. He's lucky not to go into the book for that.
Almost a chance for Congo DR. Kasusula plays a fantastic diagonal ball into the area and it's brought down by Mputu but before he can get a shot away the defence recover well to clear for a corner. The Leopards are sensing a goal here...
Tresor Mabi Mputu has been a thorn in Ghana's side all afternoon and the Congo DR captain was thoroughly deserving of that goal. Can he now drag his side back to level terms? Still plenty of action to come in this one.
First sub of the game as Christian Atsu makes way for Rabiu Mohammed.
GOAL!!! DR CONGO ARE BACK IN IT!! What was I saying about not taking your chances? The Leopards score with their next attack and it's Mputu who slots it past Fatau Dauda after running on to a through ball. Game on.
Breathing space now for Kwesi Appiah's men as they give themselves a two goal cushion. It might be a bit harsh on Congo DR but that is the cruel reality of not taking your chances.
GOALL!! 2-0 TO THE BLACK STARS!! From the resulting corner Ghana double their lead. Wakaso swings in a deep ball to the back post and Asamoah rises highest to power a header beyond Kidiaba and into the goal via the crossbar.
Ghana seem to be a lot more aggressive at the beginning of the half and they create the first opportunity, Kidiaba forced to parry Adomah's effort behind for a corner.
We are now back underway in Port Elizabeth with no changes to either side. Will Congo DR change their approach to dealing with one of the tournament favourites?
What can we expect from the second half then? After finally seeing the tournament's inaugural goal then hopefully they'll be plenty more to follow. Let the floodgates open!
The first goal of the tournament had a distinctly Italian flavour to it as both the architect and the beneficiary play their football in Serie A. Badu is currently on the books at Udinese while Asamoah is at Juventus. Bello.
HALFTIME: Ghana 1-0 Congo DR. So we finally have the long awaited first goal of the tournament thanks to Emmanuel Agyemang Badu. It was a neat move from Ghana but they've shown little else apart from that and Congo DR have threatened on various occasions. This game is far from over.
Free-kick for Ghana on the right-hand side of the box at the end of the half but it's punched away by Kidiaba and that brings up halftime.
The half is coming to an end with Claude Le Roy's side searching for an equaliser but they're in danger of being caught on the counter.
Yellow CardAlbert Adomah
Adomah receives the first booking of the match for a poor challenge on Issama.
GOALLL!!! BADU NETS FOR GHANA!! This is more like it from Ghana. Kwadwo Asamoah plays a fantastic one-two with Gyan to split the Congo DR defence wide open and he puts the ball across goal for Badu to stick out a leg and produce the first goal of the tournament.
Poor free-kick from Kasusula who can't get his effort beyond the wall. LuaLua wins a corner after his follow up is deflected wide but nothing comes from it.
Jerry Akaminko brings down Mputu on the edge of the Ghana box and there's a big chance from a dangerous set piece here for the Leopards.
Incidentally, there is always a plethora of cracking haircuts on display at these tournaments and Kidiaba's has to be up there for me this year. Think of Willow Smith in the video for 'I whip my hair'. Exactly.
OH DEAR ASAMOAH GYAN!! The Black Star's biggest attacking threat has just missed a bona fide sitter as he is played clean through on goal but slices his effort horribly wide when he tries to place it beyond Muteba Kidiaba.
The free flowing football that we're use to seeing Ghana play may not be on display but one thing that is is their strength. A couple of big challenges has led to a few Congo DR players getting well acquainted with the turf in the last few minutes.
Adomah sends a wicked ball across the box but Gyan is miles offside and even then can't make a decent connection with the cross. Kwesi Appiah's side beginning to push forward more readily now.
Albert Adomah is sent chasing a ball down the right flank but can't get there before it rolls out for a goal kick. A big change of scenery today for the Bristol City forward as he makes his African Cup of Nations debut.
Mubarak Wakaso is down in midfield for Ghana after being caught by a flailing arm by Mulota Kabangu. The Espanyol midfielder is OK continue though after a few moments.
Ghana were the favourites coming into this match but they've shown little to merit that tag so far in Port Elizabeth. Really impressive start by Congo DR.
ANOTHER BIG CHANCE FOR CONGO DR!! The Leopards really should be ahead now. Anderlecht's Mbokani gets to the byline and has time to look up and pick out Mputu but the midfielder can only skew his effort over the bar. Bright start from Claude Le Roy's men.
INCHES AWAY FROM THE OPENING GOAL!! Fantastic strength shown by Mputu, who has been causing problems for the Ghanaian defence in the opening stages, as he turns his man on the edge of the box and slips the ball back for LuaLua who rattles the crossbar. Let off for Ghana.
Emmanuel Agyemang Badu does really well in midfield to hold of a number of challenges and slips the ball through for Gyan but the former Sunderland man can only force a corner for the Black Stars. The no. 3 could have done better there.
Important clearance from Mpeko Issama as Ghana threaten down the right flank. The defender, who plays hos football in Congo DR for Vita Club, slams the ball into touch before Gyan can connect with a dangerous cut back.
One thing that is certainly different from yesterday is the weather. Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium is currently basked in sunshine. A far cry from the torrential rain at the Soccer City Stadium yesterday.
Lomana LuaLua forces the first corner of the game as his cross is blocked on the left hand side, but Mabi Mputu's corner is cleared at the near post.
We are underway at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium. Ghana in the traditional white strip and Congo DR in Blue with red shorts.
Interesting twist to the traditional routine of an international match as both captains read out a message to the crowd. Asamoah Gyan reads out his message in English, while the Congo DR captain addresses the crowd in French. Could you imagine Steven Gerrard addressing the crowd at Wembley of the dangers of binge drinking? The Africans could be on to something here...
The teams are out and the national anthems are blaring. One thing that is immediately noticeable is the size of the crowd. It's almost non-existent! Disappointing turnout in Port Elizabeth, although I can imagine yesterday's slow start to the tournament can't have helped.
A number of promising players on display this afternoon, including the 'Ghanian Messi' Christian Atsu. The Leopards on the other hand will be relying on the power and strength of Anderlecht forward Dieumerci Mbokani.
So a fairly strong attacking impetus from both sides. Surely we'll see the first goal of the tournament this afternoon. And hopefully the second. And the third. And the fourth...
And here's how CONGO DR line up: Kidiaba, Issama, Kasusula, Mabiala, Mongongu, Mulumbu, Makiadi, Kabungu, Mabi, Mbokani, LuaLua.
We are just over ten minutes away from kick-off so let's bring you some team news, starting with GHANA: Dauda, Paintsil, Akaminko, Boye, Atsu, Agyemang, Boateng, Adomah, Asamoah, Wakaso, Gyan.
Both of today's team have already created their own headlines in the build up to their opening fixture of the tournament. The Black Star's coach Kwesi Appiah decided to leave star player Andre Ayew out of the squad after he turned up late for the training camp, while Congo weren't sure they would have a coach in their dugout today. Let's hope that drama can be matched on the pitch.
Ah, the African Cup of Nations; bursting with passion, flair and a bucket-load of goals am I right? Well, not if yesterday's dismal opening round of games was anything to go by. Let's see if Ghana and Congo DR can shake some life into the tournament. I'm Harry Slavin and I will be with you throughout the 90 minutes of today's Group B fixture to bring you the action minute-by-minute.
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