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Africa U20 Cup of Nations

U20 Afcon: Ghana 2-0 Burkina Faso: Black Satellites off the mark in Niger

21:18 EAT 04/02/2019
Ghana U20
Jimmy Cobblah's outfit accounted for their Burkinabe counterparts to begin the continental youth championship on a winning note

Ghana opened their 2019 Africa U-20 Cup of Nations campaign in style with a 2-0 triumph over Burkina Faso in Niger on Monday.

Daniel Lomotey struck in either half to hand the Black Satellites all three points at the Maradi Stadium.

The result has moved Jimmy Cobblah's outfit to top of Group B, on tie with Senegal, who beat Mali 2-0 in the other group game on Sunday.

The Ghana-Burkina Faso duel was originally scheduled for Sunday but problems with the floodlights at the venue forced a rescheduling to Monday.

In the absence of lead striker Basit Abdul Rahman Umar, who pulled out from Ghana's squad at the last hour due to injury, Wafa's Lomotey was entrusted to lead the Satellites' attack.

The 19-year-old definitely did not disappoint as he put Ghana in the lead in the 41st minute, out-muscling Gilbert Kone after goalkeeper Abdul Manaf Nurudeen drove a long ball up-field and dinking the ball over the on-rushing goalkeeper Mohamed Zegue Traore.

In the 77th minute, Lomotey fetched his second goal of the game, interestingly in a similar fashion to the first.

After Nordsjaelland midfielder Mohammed Kudus lifted a ball into the box, the Wafa striker once again out-paced Kone and lobbed the ball over goalkeeper Traore.

Burkina Faso mounted a late challenge but the Black Satellites held on for their first win on matchday one.

Ghana will play their second game against Senegal on Wednesday.

The top two from the group at the end of the first round are guaranteed qualification for the U-20 World Cup slated for Poland in May/June.

Ghana have not qualified for the global showpiece since a second-round finish at New Zealand 2015.