A brace from Japan’s Maika Hamano in the second Group D fixture of the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup gives Ghana a slim chance of progression in the competition.
The Black Princesses of Ghana lost their opening match against USA and needed a win or draw to cushion their progression in the tourney, but the team is most likely to exit after two losses in their World Cup campaign.
The match played at the Estadio Morera Soto in Alajuela, Costa Rica on Sunday evening saw Japan’s Hamano expertly executed two spot kicks following Susan Duah and Anastasia Achiaa’s fouls in the 18-yard box in the 62nd and 73rd minute respectively.
In the first half, Ghana put up an improved performance from their last game to pick a win, but the Princesses were not up to the strength of their opponents to grab a win or a point.
Ghana’s goalkeeper, Cynthia Konlan made two fantastic saves from Aoba Fujino and Riko Yoshida’s strikes to keep the scoreline barren.
The defending champions mounted excessive pressure on Ghana’s defence which nearly resulted to a goal, but Manaka Matsukubo superb strike was denied by the goal post.
Moments later, Mukarama Abdullai, Ghana’s prolific striker came close to securing Coach Ben Fokuo’s side the lead, but her strike went flying across the face of goal with no Ghanaian player to connect in some few minutes to end the first stanza.
Despite Fokuo’s substitutions from recess, it was not enough to give him the crucial points desired.
Though Ghana has a final match to play against Netherlands on Wednesday, the results won’t be enough to guarantee the Princesses stay in the competition depending on results from the other match in the group.
With two matches played, the Black Princesses have conceded five goals with no consolation goal.
Japan sits at the summit of Group with six points, ahead of USA and Netherlands with Ghana at the bottom with no points.