Ghana needed all their courage and belief to defeat Brazil 1-0 in their Round of 16 encounter at Soccer Only Field in Gwangyang on Wednesday. Reduced to ten men in the first half, the Black Starlets owed their famous win to Issac Donkor's strike.
The experts predicted a well-balanced match and they were spot on. Brazil's calm and intricate build-up play was impressive to behold as the imperious Fabio pulled the strings, but so too were Ghana's explosive counter-attacks, with Francis Boadi often winning the ball and jet-heeled duo Sadick Adams and Ransford Osei then causing the damage. Despite the swift movement, though, the Black Starlets were constantly let down by poor finishing, and their situation worsened when the tireless Boadi was sent off just before the break for two crunching tackles in the space of ten minutes.
Instead of tightening up their formation to compensate, the Africans approached the second half determined to attack. It was an attitude that paid off handsomely in the 51 st minute, when Marcelo failed to hold on to a deflected shot from Issac Donkor. The Brazilian goalkeeper made a desperate but futile dive to keep the ball from crossing the line, and ten minutes later Osei almost notched Ghana's second when he headed against a post. Fellipe, Fabio and Junior all tried to pull Brazil back on level terms, but none could find a way past a Joseph Addo in commanding form between the sticks.
Ghana will take on Peru in the quarter-finals.