Ghana’s story at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) finals came to an astonishing end after they were beaten 3-2 by first-timer Comoros in a thriller at the 30,000 capacity Roumde Adjia Stadium in Garoua, Cameroon on Tuesday evening.
Comoros who are making their first-ever appearance in the continental showpiece were on the back of two defeats in as many Group C games, a 1-0 opening loss against Gabon on January 10 and a 2-0 defeat against Morocco on January 14.
Seconds to the kickoff, these results had Comoros at the bottom of Group C with no point while Ghana was third with a single point after playing out to a 1-1 with Gabon on January 14 and losing the opener to Morocco 1-0 on January 10.
El Fardou Ben Nabouhane fired Comoros in front just after four minutes, with the Black Stars losing striker Andre Ayew to a red card in the 25th minute to further complicate their progression matrix as the islanders took a 1-0 lead into the break.
Ahmed Mogni was on target a minute after the hour mark to double the lead for the underdogs, but Ghana, four-time AFCON champions fought back through Richmond Boakye (64) and Alexander Djiku (77) to draw level.
In what was a dramatic ending to the bottom-of-the-group tie, Mogni tapped in his second and Comoros’ winner in the 85th minute, making it 3-2 for the debutants whose camp erupted into wild celebrations.
The result marked Comoros’ first-ever victory at the biennial tournament while it condemned the Black Stars to their first group-stage exit since 2006, worse off they exited without a single win.
The debutants who have caused a major upset at the tournament could now reach the last 16 as one best-ranking teams.