Ghana/Nigeria: Black Stars Shoot Down Super Eagles in Thriller

3 February 2008

Forty-four thousand Ghanaian soccer fans erupted in joy as the Black Stars came from behind to take the lead in their Africa Cup of Nations quarterfinal with Nigeria in Accra on Sunday night.

The winning goal was scored by Nottingham Forest's Junior Agogo eight minutes before the end of the game. The final score was 2-1.

Ghana won with only 10 men on the pitch - captain John Mensah had been red-carded in the second half.

Ghana dominated play in the first half but failed to press home its advantage in frequent shots at goal. Yakubu Aiyegbeni temporarily turned the game in Nigeria's favour when he was fouled and took a penalty in the 34th minute to make the score 1-0.

But Ghana came back on the verge of halftime when Michael Essien headed a ball from Quincy Owusu Abeyie into the net, equalising the score and setting the game up for a tightly-fought second half.

Ghana now go through to the semifinals on Thursday. After the game, Junior Agogo told a television reporter that when Mensah had been sent off, members of the team had been told to put in an extra ten percent of effort to make up for his absence. "I can't believe we're through," Agogo said.

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