WAFU U-20 Championship: Ghana beat Niger on penalties to qualify for Africa Youth Championship

Ghanas U-20 team are through to the Africa Youth Championship in Mauritania next year after reaching the finals of the WAFU Zone B U-20 championship with penalty shootout victory over Niger.Frank Boateng converted the winning penalty as the Black Satellites recorded a 5-3 shootout success over the Nigeriens.After an explosive start to the game, Ghana were denied the lead after two brilliant saves in succession by Niger goalie Abubakar Issaka.The Nigerian shotstopper saved a Mugeez Zakaria strike after he has been sent through by Asiam before acrobatically punching a ferocious volley from Sulley Mohammed.The save from the latter forced an injury in the goalkeeper, who had to be replaced after attempts to continue the game proved futile.Few minutes after the substitution, the Nigeriens had a golden opportunity to take the lead but the attackers effort went wide off the post.Precious Boah, who was returning from a game suspension pulled a save from second goalie Omar Lawali after a good control and a left foot strike.However, the second half of the game saw both side share a fair amount of possession but again Boahs 56th minute freekick nearly gave Ghana the lead after rattling the crossbar.Both sides began to approach the game cautiously with the clock ticking forcing the game into extra time.Ghana had a goal ruled out as offside in the second half of extra time before coach Karim Zito brought on goalkeeper Emmanuel Essue for Dan Lad Ibrahim as penalties approached.

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