Ghana’s Black Stars and 19 other African teams will be waiting anxiously for the crucial and final round of qualifying matches for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, after easing past the knockout stage into the group qualifiers.
Football’s world governing body FIFA will announce the date for the draws for the group qualifiers.
Wakaso Mubarak and Jordan Ayew provided the killer punches which flattened a brave Comoros side, as the Stars called the bluff of the island nation with a 2-0 win in the return leg clash last Tuesday in Kumasi.
Avram Grant’s side struggled to a scoreless draw in the first leg match but managed to find the winning touch on home soil without hitting top gear on a rainy afternoon at the Baba Yara Stadium.
Comoros, like other underdogs, punched above their weight in the first leg matches of the second round of the African qualifying competition, but when it mattered most the continent’s minnows were up against the ropes in the return leg matches as the favourites stamped their authority to reach the final phase of the qualifiers.
In what was to be the Stars’ last match of the year, Jordan not only scored the Stars’ second goal which secured Ghana’s place in the final qualifying phase, but also emerged as the team’s highest scorer for 2015 with five goals.
The Aston Villa forward’s goal after a brilliant solo effort put him ahead of his elder brother, Andre, Wakaso and team captain, Asamoah Gyan, as the Stars’ leading goal scorer for the year.
The younger Ayew is fast establishing his place in the national team and his scoring rate this year may just have silenced his strongest critics.
He scored against Equatorial Guinea, Congo at the Africa Cup of Nations and hit a brace against Mauritius in an AFCON qualifier to end the year as Coach Avram Grant’s most potent striker of the team.
His brother, Andre, has scored three, Wakaso has two and Gyan has one goal this year.