August 1, 2021

Senegal lift their first WAFU tournament after seeing off defending champions Ghana 3-1 on penalties

Senegal have won their first ever WAFU tournament after beating defending champions Ghana 3-1 on penalties in Lat Dior stadium in Thies. The game ended 0-0 within full 90 minutes, but Youssouph Badji put hosts Senegal ahead in the extra time before Joseph Esso equalize for the defending champions just two minutes after Badji’s strike for Senegal.

On their way to the final, Senegal crushed out Guinea-Bissau, Benin and Mali whiles Ghana managed to eliminate Gambia, Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast in knockout, quarter-final and semi-finals respectively. In the game itself, it was a balanced display between the two sides as each side had the opportunity to enjoy their own share of possession in the total 90 minutes.

In the extra time, Ghana stole possession from Senegal but Saliou Dia’s men somehow got the better of Ghana somewhere just two minutes into the second half of the extra time as right back Fatau Mohammed was dispossessed by Diop after Ghana had launched an attack. Diop on the left flank for Senegal sent in a low cross across Ghana goal area for Youssouph Badji to calmly finish off Ghana keeper Eric Ofori Antwi on 107 minute.

Two minutes later, Joseph Esso equalized for Ghana scoring a volley from a close range after the hosts have failed to clear their lines resulting from Augustine Okrah’s free kick into Senegal box.

Goalkeeper Pape Saidou Ndiaye was the hero for the Teranga Lions, saving two spot kicks from Ghana’s Justice Blay and Augustine Okrah. Fatawu Mohammed also struck the crossbar to hand the home team victory 3-1 in the shootout.

The result ends a miserable run for Senegal in major finals, having lost Africa Cup of Nations finals in 2002 and 2019 as well as three Under-20 AFCON finals.

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