Saturday Nov 13, 2021. 13:00
Ghana face a do-or-die situation when they host South Africa for their final 2022 World Cup Qualification Group G match, set for the Cape Coast Stadium on the evening of Sunday 14 November 2021, kick-off at 21:00 CAT.
SA have put themselves in a strong position to advance into the next and final round of qualification after they defeated Zimbabwe 1-0 at home on Thursday. The result – secured by a first-half goal from Teboho Mokoena – means Bafana Bafana have a three-point lead over nearest chasers Ghana.
Only a defeat at the hands of the Black Stars will prevent SA from becoming one of the 10 teams in the playoff round next year, though no game against the West African heavyweights should be taken for granted.
And coach Hugo Broos has expressed his belief that his team will be better for the clash in Cape Coast, arguing that their showing against Zimbabwe left much to be desired.
“I am happy with the result, but not the performance,” explained Broos. “The opponent was more aggressive, they were better on the ball and we were a little bit soft today, I don’t know why. Lucky for us that it was 1-0 and they did not score, because they had chances also.”
He added, “We are in a good position to go to Ghana, but we have to know that the performance has to be much better on Sunday, because we play against a much better team also.”
Ghana relinquished all initiative in the group when they could only draw 1-1 away to Ethiopia on Thursday. The Black Stars had the game by the scruff of the neck after Andre Ayew’s beautiful opening goal, but they ignored several warning shots from the Walia Ibex before conceding to Getaneh Kebede.
This leaves the West African heavyweights needing a home win over SA to secure a spot in the next round – or a second World Cup Qualification failure in succession will be their fate.
“Everything will be decided on Sunday, so it is important that we win our next match with a two-goal difference if we want to qualify for the next round,” said Ghana coach Milovan Rajevac.
“We have to concentrate on the following [SA] game and do what it takes to win that game.”
In head-to-head stats, Ghana and South Africa have met in 15 matches dating back to 1994. Bafana Bafana have five wins compared to four for the Black Stars, while six games have been drawn. The teams’ Matchday 2 meeting in Group G back in September saw SA claim a 1-0 home win in Soweto thanks to a late strike from Bongokuhle Hlongwane.