2014 FIFA World Cup
Teams: Ghana 1-2 USA
Date: 16 June 2014
Venue: Estadio das Dunas
The fastest goal so far in the 2014 FIFA World Cup and a goal three minutes from time saw the United States of America beat Ghana 2-1 in a Group G match at the Estadio das Dunas in Natal on Monday.
The result sees USA in second place in Group G behind Germany who beat Portugal 4-0 earlier in the day – Ghana occupy third place and the Portuguese the last spot in the group.
It was the worst possible start to the game for Ghana who went behind after only 32 seconds of play.
Some sloppy defending by John Boye allowed Clint Dempsey to beat him on his way into the box before the America fired his side in front from six-yards out.
Ghana took control of the game after that and dictated matters, but their crossing in the final third was poor and chances on goal were few and far between.
USA suffered a bit of a set-back in the 21st minute when Jozy Altidore had to leave the field injured (hamstring) and was replaced by Aaron Johannsson.
Ghana’s first real effort on goal only came in the 29th minute when Christian Atsu curled a 22-yard free-kick inches wide of the post.
Three minutes later Asamoah Gyan beat a couple of defenders on the edge of the 18-yard box, before his powerful shot was acrobatically saved by Tim Howard.
Ghana should have equalised in the dying seconds of the half when Atsu broke into the box from the right side and pulled the ball back for an unmarked Jordan Ayew, but he scuffed his 14-yard shot straight at the keeper.
The Africans continued to dominate matters at the start of the second 45 and ten minutes after the restart a long range shot from Sulley Muntari sailed centimetres wide of the post.
A minute later Muntari turned provider when an inch perfect cross from the left found Gyan, but he headed just over from ten-yards out.
In the 58th minute only the fingertips of Howard kept USA in front when the keeper turned a Gyan header around the post with a fantastic save.
Four minutes later Astu tried his luck again from 20-yards, but his shot skimmed the wrong side of the post.
Finally, in the 82nd minute Ghana were able to draw level when a clever back-heel from Gyan set Andrew Ayew through on goal and he made no mistake from eight-yards out, 1-1.
Five minutes later, however, and some sloppy defending by Ghana allowed John Brooks to head home a corner-kick for the USA as they stole the win, 2-1.