World Cup 2026Q: Jordan Ayew scores late winner as Ghana beat Mali 2-1

Jordan Ayew was Ghana’s hero in Bamako after climbing off the bench to score a late winner as the Black Stars defeated Mali in their 2026 World Cup qualifier in Bamako on Thursday.

Mali opened the scoring through Kamory Doumbia at the stroke of half-time but Ernest Nuamah responded after the break before Ayew netted the winner in extra-time.

The hosts made their intentions clear early in the game after winger Lassine Sinayoko pulled a great save from Ghana goalkeeper Lawrence Ati Zigi.

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Moments later, the Saint Gallen shot-stopper was tested again as the Black Stars’ defence was put under huge pressure, with Alexander Djiku intercepting a Falaye Sacko pass.

Halfway through the first half, Mohammed Kudus fired from a distance as Ghana surged forward for the first time in the game.

Ghana began to build up slowly despite Mali dominating possession as forward Antoine Semenyo twice came close, with his earlier effort going inches wide before a lovely control and a curler from the Bournemouth attacker.

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Mali made their dominance count just before the break after Doumbia’s effort, which was initially blocked by Djiku ricocheted the forward for the opener.

After the break, the Black Stars improved their game and should have levelled just a minute into the half after Tariq Lamptey’s cross met Semenyo at the far end but his effort was not strong enough.

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Kudus then forced a throw which was quickly taken with Salis Samed’s perfect cross meeting the head of Nuamah for the equalizer in the 55th minute.

Mali coach, Eric Chelles brought on Atalanta star El Bilal Toure, who caused some problems for the Ghana defence, coming close twice within three minutes.

Source: Asaaseradio


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