The Comoros beat Ghana 3-2 at the Roumdé Adjia Stadium on Tuesday in the third and final day of Group C, rekindling their hopes. Ghana are officially out of the competition after a game full of emotion and drama.
The Comoros have now three points (3), moving from fourth position to third, just behind Gabon, second with five points and will have to wait for the results of the other groups to advance as of the best third.
The Comoros who had not scored a single point before the match were theoretically out of the competition before the kickoff. The Southern-African representatives lost the first two matches respectively to Gabon (1-0) and Morocco (2-0).
The four-time African champions (Ghana) are one of the greatest powers in world football. Despite having won the CAN in four editions, Ghana is the team with the most finals lost in the competition (five). The Ghanaian national team lost the finals of 1968, 1970, 1992, 2010 and 2015.
Despite their lack of experience in front of the four-time champions Ghana, Comoros did not give enough time to breathe to their opponents. A quick counter-attacking move eventually led to the early goal from captain El-Fardou Mohamed (4').
Ghana's nightmare was just beginning! A serious foul by captain Andre Ayew on Comoros goalkeeper Boina Ben earned him a red card at the 23rd minute. Ayew was trying to take advantage of a rebound and ended up injuring the goalkeeper, who had to be replaced in the 24th minute by his colleague Ahamada Nadhoim.
The Comoros' second goal came in the 61st minute through Ahmed Mogni, who broke through four defenders and slotted the ball into the back of the net.
Dramatic moments followed at the Roumdé Adjia Stadium. Ghana were levelled through Richmond Yiadom (63') and defender Alaxander Djiku (76'). The goals revived the game and the Comoros took the lead again with the third goal scored by Ahmed Mogni (86').
What they said
Amir Abdou (Coach, Comoros)
"We did not back down even after Ghana equalized. We always believed we could achieve a famous victory for our nation. I sent on attacking players in the belief that we could score a third goal and my decision paid off. Now we must wait to see if we are among the best four third-placed teams and play in the second round. We are satisfied with the way we played. We had a plan and stuck to it. We learnt from the mistakes we made in previous games.”
Milovan Rajevac (Coach, Ghana)
"I came to Ghana to qualify the team for the World Cup. That is my primary target. I will stay and lead the team in the March play-offs.”