New Coach James Kwasi Appiah got started with flying colours as Ghana thrashed Ethiopia 5-0 in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualification Group F match at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi on Sunday.
The emphatic win sees the Black Stars placed at the top of the group standings with three points, while Walia Ibex are rotted at the bottom of the table without a single point.
The opening goal came 10 minutes into the match and it was Asamoah Gyan, who scored with a header to make it 1-0 to Ghana with Thomas Agyepong grabbing an assist. And not just the opener for the Stars’s captain but it was his historic 50th goal for Ghana.
The momentum was with the Black Stars as they made it 2-0 through John Boye, whose effort beat Ethiopia goalkeeper Abel Mamo hands down.
It was nearly 3-0 just before the half-hour mark when Agyepong played a cross for Gyan, but the Black Stars were ruled offside as the hosts searched for more goals.
The home side did score their third goal five minutes before the half-time break. Ebenezer Ofori scored with a screamer – making it 3-0 to Ghana. Ofori did a cut in from the right flank and gave a curling into the net to the amazement of all present at the Baba Yara Stadium.
The Black Stars were deservedly 3-0 up at the interval following an action-packed first-half which saw Walia Ibex struggle.
Things went from bad to worse for Ethiopia just three minutes into the second-half as Raphael Dwamena put his name on the score sheet after he tapped home a loose ball as a result of Dede Ayew’s shot which was saved by the Ethiopian goal keeper.
The debutant striker beat Mamo from close range to make it 4-0 to Ghana much to the delight of the home crowd inside the Baba Yara Stadium.
On the hour-mark, the Black Stars extended their lead and it was Dwamena once again – beating Ethiopia shot-stopper Mamo from close range.
In the end, Ghana ran out 5-0 winners over Ethiopia in their first match of the 2019 AFCON qualifying campaign.
Ghana (3) 5 (Gyan 10′, Boye 15′, E.Ofori 40′, Dwamena 48′, 60′)
Ethiopia (0) 0
Ghana XI: Ofori, Afful, Lumor, Boye, Amartey, Ofori, Agyepong, Partey (Acquah 73′), A. Ayew (J.Ayew 79′), Gyan (Waris 65′), Dwamena.
Ethiopia XI: A.Mamo (Tassew 64′), A. Tesfaye; Kasim, S. Tesfaye (Mohammed 78′), Tamene, Mesfen (Said 46′), Bekele, Panom, Giday, Oukri, Getaneh.