How It All Went Wrong for Ghana in Humiliating AFCON Exit

Ghana have become the latest victims of football’s underdog story as they crashed out of the Africa Cup of Nations group stage after a Matchday 3 defeat to minnows Comoros, in a 3-2 thriller which already stands out as one of the games of the tournament and perhaps the biggest shock to go with.

The Black Stars suffered the humiliating loss to the AFCON debutants at the Roumde Adjia Stadium in Garoua on Tuesday night as they finished bottom of Group C with just a single point. Prior to the start of the tournament, the Black Stars knew they were in for a tough group but no one could have expected they would finish bottom of the pool.

How It All Went Wrong for Ghana

Losing their first game against Morocco by  a 1-0 scoreline and playing to 1-1 stalemate against Gabon in the next fixture put the Black Stars in a rather difficult position ahead of their final game.

Taking on a side yet to score in their opening two group fixtures, there was a whole lot of confidence Ghana would claim their first win and at least secure a third-place finish to provide a chance of qualification. However, it was an unexpected story at the Roumde Adjia Stadium.

The West Africans needed maximum points to have a chance of qualifying to the last 16 but made the worst possible start by going behind in the fourth minute as El Fardou Ben Mohamed scored the Islanders’ first-ever AFCON goal before Ahmed Mogni added a second in the 61st minute.

Ghana’s task had been made much harder by the harsh sending off of captain Andre Ayew – after a VAR review in the 25th minute – but they harbored hopes of a miraculous comeback when goals from Richmond Boakye and Alexander Djiku levelled the game in the 77th minute. However, Mogni completed his sensational brace to quash any Ghanaian hopes with five minutes left on the clock.

Subsequently, Ghana have failed to win at least one AFCON group stage match in their entire history as the four-time African champions suffered their first group stage exit since 2006. Their quest for a first African title since 1982 will continue for another edition.

Elsewhere, Comoros harbor hopes of progress into the Round of 16 with an outside chance of being among the best third-placed finishers after the Coelacanths secured one of the biggest shocks in AFCON history as they scored and recorded their maiden victory at the finals.

Incredibly, the 132nd-ranked side in the world representing a tiny island nation of just under one million people have beaten one of African football’s giants and theirs is a win for the ages regardless if their AFCON adventure ended in Garoua.