Ghana played out to a 1-1 draw against Chile in an international friendly in the United States on Wednesday night with home-based winger Richard Mpong scoring on his debut.
Playing without 11 of their key players, the coach Goran Stevanovic had the chance of using some of the players on the fringes and most of them impressed.
Five players were given the chance to make their debut as the Ghanaians cast their net wider for more players to join the Black Stars pool.
Goalkeeper Adam Kwarasey was also a delight to watch as he made five world-class saves as the Black Stars picked up the pieces from their disastrous 2012 Nations Cup campaign.
The Black Stars dominated the early exchanges with Kwadwo Asamoah, Sulley Muntari and Derek Boateng directing affairs in midfield which created some anxious moments for the South Americans.
Muntari’s well struck freekick was powerfully headed by John Pantsil which forced goalkeeper Claudio Bravo to produce a fine diving save on eight minutes.
Moments later Muntari joined forces with Asamoah on the left and released the ball to Ghana league’s leading scorer Emmanuel Baffoe but the ball was cleared before the New Edubiase attacker could reach it.
Muntari’s powerful header from a corner was parried by Bravo in the 11th minute as the Black Stars had a complete stranglehold of the game with the controversial referee ignoring several fouls on the Ghanaians.
But the Chileans quickly responded with Barcelona star Alexis Sanchez moving deep into midfield where he was difficult to contain.
In response to the threat posed by Sanchez coach Goran Stevanovic made an early change in thew 17th minute as second striker
He combined well with Matias Fernandez at the egde of the Ghana box, focing John Pantsil to make a goal-line clearance in the 20th minute.
Jonathan Mensah was also called to the resuce following another move initiated by Sanchez but Kwarasey dived to the left to save the ball, preventing the Chileans from taking the lead.
The Norway-based shot-stopper had to be at his best on the half mark following a shot from striker Humberto Suazo.
But the Black Star intelligent midfield display saw Asamoah combining again with Muntari on the left with the AC Milan who released an unmarked Mpong on the right.
The Medeama slippery winger raced into the box before firing past Bravo for his maiden Black Stars goal on his senior international debut.
Ghana made several chages at half-time with Masahudu Alhassan making way for Daniel Opare, John Boye’s postion was taken by Lee Addy, Anthony Annan made way for Afriyie Acquah while Sulley Muntari position was taken by Patrick Nyarko.
The Chileans returned from the break more purposeful and when Sanchez intercepted a pass from Jonathan Mensah he only had Kwarasey at his mercy but the goalkeeper reacted with another fine save.
Asamoah had a good opportunity to extend Ghana’s lead after Nyarko found the Udinese man unmarked in the box.
The midfielder curled the ball beating the goalkeeper but the ball came off the upright which left the Chileans off the hook.
There another opportunity for Kwarasey to shine as he mande another one-on-one save from Sanchez.
But in the 75th minute the controversial referee adjued Pantsil to have fouled an opponent in the box which resulted in a penalty.
Matia Fernandez converted the penalty which gave Chile the chance to salvage something from the game.
But there was still time for the controversial referee to take some dodgy decisions against Ghana which resulted in some strong protests from the Ghana team.
Richard Mpong: Scored Ghana's only goal
Ghana’s team manager Opoku Afriyie was even sent off for his protests against some of the bad refereeing decisions.
But the Black Stars performance on Wednesday night will appease some of their fans who have been angry over their performance at the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations.
Ghana starting line-up
Adam Kwarasey, John Paintsil, Masahudu Alhassan/Daniel Opare, John Boye/Lee Addy, Jonathan Mensah, Anthony Annan/Afriyie Acquah, Derek Boateng, Kwadwo Asamoah, Sulley Muntari/Patrick Nyarko, Dominic Oduro/Richard Mpong/Abdul Waris, Emmanuel Baffoe.
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