Mali beat Ghana 2-1 to enter semis

Ghana have been in top form in the FIFA U-17 World Cup but Mali have been the team to beat and both African nations will square off in the quarter-final of the tournament

Mali beat Ghana to reach U-17 World Cup semi-final

Despite Mali beating Ghana 2-1, the game itself was in doubt as one of the teams objected to playing in such circumstances but after the match officials inspected the field and made sure that the ball passed the minimum rolling criteria according to FIFA Standards and the field markings were properly visible, they chose to go ahead and start the game.

Uninterrupted rains from yesterday dampen the spirit of local soccer fans as only 3017 spectators were in the gallery to witness the game.

Coach Fabin is aware of the might of the Malians and that if he has to end the good run of Coach Jonas Kokou Komla side in the tournament, then he needs to improve on his team's conversion rate to ensure a more clinical Starlets attack.

Hadji Drame and Djemoussa Traore scored 1-1 goal each to make their way to the semis in a nail-biting match.

Ghana were lucky not to be two goals down just before the half hour mark, after Mali's Ibrahim Kane wrong-footed the opponent's defence with a scintillating run down the left flank, before Konate's effort towards goal was blocked and scrambled clear.

Ghana's 41st-minute goal, by Ibrahim Sulley, was disallowed and captain Eric Ayiah hauled up for an infringement.

As the Ghanaian goalkeeper misjudged a clearance, he sliced the ball out wide.

Sadiq Ibrahim then went on to win a penalty for his side as he was brutally tackled by Fode Konate inside the box and Kudus Mohammed made amends as he lifted his hand up to take the shot and did not mistake from 12 yards, beating the 'keeper easily. Mohammed converted the spot kick.

There was jubilation after the full time whistle as Mali beacame the first team to qualify for the semifinals as they now travel to Navi Mumbai to face the winners of the match between Spain and Iran on 25th. However, the Eaglets were able to see off the rest of the game and secure their second appearance in the last four in as many tournaments.

Mali will play the victor between Spain and Iran in the semifinals on Wednesday.

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