Ghana dethrones Mali
Moment of the match: Mubarak Wakaso’s penalty conversion in the 38th minute.
Eish!: Referee Doue Noumandiez failed to send off Ghana goalkeeper Abdul-Fatawu Dauda after he handled the ball outside the box.
Ghana beat Mali 1-0 to move to the top in Group B with the final first-round match to spare.
The Black Stars midfielder Mubarak Wakato settled the tie seven minutes before the break.
The goal came after Badu Agyemang headed against the post a few minutes earlier.
Coach Akwesi Appiah was under pressure to deliver against the Eagles as a loss cold have dented any hopes of a quarterfinal qualification.
Ghana threw away a 2-0 cushion against the DR Congo in the opening game and Appiah made three changes to the side. The likes of experienced defender John Vorsah maintained shape at the back.
Mali had their own chances in the game but their captain, Seydou Keita, was unlucky not to have put away his effort from the free kick.
Although the game was slightly balanced between the two sides, Ghana utilised their speedy attacks towards the end to suppress any hope for a comeback by Mali.
The Black Stars will face Niger in the final group match on Monday while Mali will leave for Durban to face DR Congo on the same day.
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