Black Queens thump She-Amavubis 5-0
Ghana's Black Queens handed their Rwandan counterparts a crushing 5-0 defeat in the return leg of the 2024 Women's Africa Cup of Nations preliminary round qualifier at the Accra Sports Stadium yesterday.
In what could be described as a walk in the park, the Ghanaians needed a hat-trick from Alice Kusi and a goal each by Evelyn Badu and Stella Nyamekye to complete a 12-0 aggregate victory over the She-Amavubis and set up a date with Namibia in November in the second round of the qualifiers.
Coach Nora Hauptle's team, already enjoying a comfortable 7-0 lead from the first leg in Kigali, were in no mood to relent on home turf.
They patiently awaited their moment, which came in the 22nd minute when Alice Kusi ignited the goal spree that saw Ghana secure a four-goal cushion going into halftime.
Throughout the first half, Ghana's relentless attacks kept the pressure on Rwanda, resulting in several scoring opportunities.
However, they were temporarily thwarted by Rwanda's goalkeeper, Diane Uwamahori, who made crucial saves, including an impressive stop from Jennifer Cudjoe's 25-yard shot.
However, the She-Amavubis could not keep the rampaging Ghanaian attack for long as Kusi opened the scoring with a spectacular goal. In the 22nd minute, midfielder Nyamekye cut in from the flanks and set up unmarked Kusi, who controlled the ball and unleashed a 30-yard thunderbolt, which caught goalkeeper Uwamahori off guard as the ball bounced off the post into the net.
Four minutes later, Kusi increased the lead to 2-0 with a header when she connected home a cross by Princella Adubea outside the opponents' penalty box.
She completed her hat-trick in the 37th minute after intercepting a pass from forward Evelyn Badu, who out-turned two markers in the penalty box before setting up her teammate to unleash a right-footed shot beyond the reach of the Rwandan goalie to make it 3-0.
In one of her trademark runs deep into the opponents' half, full-back Anasthesia Achiaa, a two-goal hero in the first leg, released a through pass to lead striker Badu, who outwitted onrushing goalkeeper Uwamahori, before tapping home Ghana's fourth goal in the 42nd minute.
Expectations of a goal harvest in the second half did not materialise even as goals by skipper Portia Boakye and Badu were ruled offside.
However, Nyamekye put the icing on the cake with Ghana's fifth goal three minutes into added time after she dribbled past her markers from the flanks and lifted the ball above Rwanda's goalkeeper into the back of the net to complete the five-goal rout and a 12-0 aggregate win.