Ghana’s World Cup journey concluded with a disappointing 2-0 loss to Uruguay at Al Janoub Stadium, resulting in the elimination of both teams from the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 finals.
Giorgio de Arrascaeta emerged as the hero for Uruguay, scoring both goals in a span of just eight minutes during the first half, dashing Ghana’s hopes of advancing to the tournament’s second round. Arrascaeta’s first goal was a close-range header, followed by an impressive volley that eluded Ghana’s goalkeeper, Lawrence Ati Zigi.
In the other Group H fixture, South Korea secured a 2-1 victory over group leaders Portugal, securing second place.
Luis Suarez played a crucial role in both of Uruguay’s goals, setting up Arrascaeta’s opening goal with a well-placed shot and providing an assist for the second.
Ghana had an opportunity to equalize when captain Andre Ayew stepped up for a penalty, but Uruguay’s goalkeeper, Sergio Rochet, made a vital save, preserving the score at 0-0. The referee awarded the penalty after reviewing the goalkeeper’s foul on Mohammed Kudus, as observed on the pitchside monitor in the 21st minute.
Coach Otto Addo made two substitutions during the second half, introducing Kamal Deen Sulemana and Osman Bukari in place of Jordan Ayew and Andre Ayew.
The Black Stars increased their pressure on Uruguay in the second half, creating several chances, with the best falling to Kudus. However, the Uruguayan goalkeeper exhibited superb skills, stretching to push the ball out for a corner kick.
Sulemana continued to trouble Uruguay’s defense, but they remained resolute, thwarting Ghana’s attempts to score.
In the 72nd minute, Daniel Kofi Kyereh replaced Salis Abdul Samed, while Antoine Semenyo substituted for Inaki Williams.
Despite Ghana’s relentless efforts to find a goal, Uruguay’s defense stood firm, denying every opportunity that came their way.
Mohammed Kudus was substituted for Abdul Fatawu Issahaku, but the young Sporting Lisbon player had a limited impact as the referee signaled the end of the match.
This loss marks the second occasion that Ghana has exited the tournament prematurely, reminiscent of their disappointing campaign in Brazil eight years ago when they lost all three group matches and were eliminated in the first round.
Ghana will now shift their focus to the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers scheduled for March next year.