Coach Charles Kwablah Akonnor’s reign as head coach of the senior national team began with an uninspiring performance as his side, the Black Stars of Ghana recorded a humiliating 3-0 defeat against the Eagles of Mali in an international friendly in Antalya, Turkey.
The former captain of the Black Stars was confirmed as coach of the senior national team in January 2020, replacing James Kwasi Appiah but had to defer his first official game as coach of the team to a later date due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic that affected global football.
Despite not engaging in any competitive fixture for the Black Stars, Akonnor and his assistant David Duncan were busy monitoring the performance of Ghanaian players scattered across the world with his squad for this month’s international break consisting of about eight debutants.
The Ghana football association, following the easing of restriction on football by CAF & FIFA arranged for two international friendlies against West African counterparts Mali and 2022 FIFA World Cup host Qatar as part of preparations for Ghana’s AFCON qualifiers against Sudan in November 2020.
Coach Akonnor in light of this began the journey as coach of the Black Stars against Mali on Friday, October 9, 2020 with a 3-0 agonizing defeat, a scoreline that many have termed embarrassing to the nation.
Mali targeted the left side of Ghana’s defense with a forward pass that beat left-back Gideon Mensah to the safe boots of Hamari Traore who wasted no time in taking the lead for the Eagles.
The Eagles targeted Ghana’s left side of the defense again with a cross from Hamari staring at the head of forward ERl Bilal Toure three minutes after the break to double their lead.
Amadou Haidara was found by a defense splitting pass, whose effort first hit the post before he curled in from a close angle to wrap up the 3-0 shameful loss.
Meanwhile, CK Akonnor and his Black Stars will have the opportunity to redeem themselves when they take on Asian giants Qatar on Monday, October 12, 2020 in another international friendly.