Fameyeh saves day for Local Stars

BY: Daniel Kenu
Players of the home-based Black Stars thanking the fans for their support after yesterday’s 2-1 victory. Picture: Emmanuel Baah

Two magic moments from a Division One player, Joel Fameyeh, edged Ghana closer to picking one of the three tickets from Zone West B for a fourth appearance at the biennial CHAN tournament in Rwanda next January.

Ghana won Sunday's crunch first leg against perennial rivals, Cote d'Ivoire, 2-1 at the Baba Yara Stadium, but the result put an enormous pressure on Coach Maxwell Konadu as he strategises from to sharpen the shooting prowess of his charges for the return leg in two weeks time.

Fameyeh's exceptional talent as a late addition brought back fond memories of former Premier League goalking and Hearts of Oak arrowhead, Joe Fameyeh, when his deft touch from a one-two with Daniel Darkwah fetched Ghana's equaliser on the stroke of half-time.

Ivorian Ibrahim Sangare's 32nd minute long drive opened the score and nearly broke the hearts of the fans after persistent calls on Coach Konadu to substitute letargic striker Mohammed Sheriff fell on deaf ears.

But quite characteristic of the Ghanaiqan side throughout their practice matches, the second half produced one of the best attacking plays from the local boys but they were wasteful upfront.

Indeed, Darkwah's 54th minute reckless shot over the crossbar with only goalkeeper Sangare Badra to beat further brought more pressure on the Asokwa Deportivo player, Fameyeh, to produce the needed magic to save his side.

And just when the fans thouht perhaps the gods were angry with the stars as nothing seemed to work upfront Fameyeh, the Kumasi Polytechnic students popped up to score the winner on 89th minute.

Until the match winner, Ivorian goalkeeper Badra had became the main obstacle between the Stars and the needed winner, thwarting goal-bound shots, including skipper Abeiku Ainooson's effort which was acrobatically parried over the crossbar.

Coach Konadu said more work needed to be done to build on the team's cohesion and poor first half performance.

But he was confident the team will rise to the occasion to pick one of the tickets for the competition in two months time.

The Black Stars move to camp today to prepare for the final leg in Abidjan.