Thomas Partey scored the goal that sent Ghana to the 2022 FIFA World Cup© Twitter/kemfa22
Arsenal midfielder Thomas Partey scored the goal that took Ghana to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar as they forced a 1-1 draw in Nigeria on Tuesday to win the Africa play-offs via an away goal. Partey scored after 10 minutes in Abuja and although another English Premier League star, William Troost-Ekong, equalized from a penalty kick in the 22nd minute, Nigeria failed to score again. The first match ended without a goal. The Ghanaian Black Star returned to the World Cup finals after qualifying in 2006, 2010 and 2014, but missed out four years ago.
The defeat was a huge blow for favorite Nigeria, who are chasing their seventh appearance in eight attempts since debuting at the 1994 World Cup.
Civil servants in the Nigerian capital were given half a day and free transportation was arranged from the suburbs to ensure a capacity of 60,000 people cheering at the Super Eagles.
Watch: Goal Thomas Partey v Nigeria
Thomas Partey slipped one under the goalkeeper! Black Stars have a goal in Abuja ????????
– ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) March 29, 2022
But the home side fell behind early when Partey’s shot from outside the box slipped between the hands of goalkeeper Francis Uzoho and into the net.
It was the latest in a series of Nigerian goalkeeper errors with Maduka Okoyo being blamed for a Tunisian goal that knocked his side out of the recent African Cup of Nations in the last 16.
Troost-Ekong was the quietest man in the noisy crater midway through the opening half when he sent Ghana goalkeeper Jojo Wollacott in the wrong direction from the penalty spot to equalize.
Napoli striker Victor Osimhen stuffed the ball into the Nigerian goal soon after, but it was ruled offside after a VAR check.
Nigeria put on constant pressure in the second half, but were unable to break through the Ghana defense controlled by Leicester City center -back Daniel Amartey.
Ghana started their two-match rivalry as underdogs after a dismal performance at the Nations Cup in January, with a defeat to a small Comoros side that condemned them for being knocked out in the embarrassing first round.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)
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