By Akyereko Frimpong Manson
Follow Akyereko on Twitter: @AkyerekOfficial
Ghanaian youth international Zak Ansah stole the headlines by netting a treble for Charlton Athletic as they mauled Ramsgate at Southwood Stadium on Wednesday evening.
The 20-year-old former Arsenal youth team attacker racked in the goals to while Mikhail Kennedy and Karlan Ahearne-Grant also found the net as the Addicks secured a convincing 5-0 win against the Ryman League Division One South side.
It was a victory that had Ansah involved at almost every stage and success, racefully stating why he deserves a first team chances at the Valley.
He tweeted after the game: “Professional job from the boys today good 5-0 win and into the final, pleased to get a hat trick as well”.
The first effort on goal came the way of the hosts with five minutes gone when full-back Chris Elliott bent a free-kick narrowly over the upright from just outside the box as Charlton struggled somewhat to keep hold of the ball in the early exchanges due in no small part to the dry, bobbly surface.
But after a quiet opening in East Kent, the visitors took advantage of some sloppy goalkeeping from Ramsgate stopper Adam Highsted to take the lead with 22 minutes gone.
Ahearne-Grant put a low ball in from the right and as the goalkeeper made a mess of what should have been a routine collection, Ansah pounced to bundle the ball home from three yards.
From there, Jason Euell’s youngsters began to take charge, and it was not long before Ansah bagged his brace on the half-hour mark to double the Addicks’ advantage.
A clever through-ball from Kieran Monlouis sent through Ahearne-Grant who did superblt to burst into the box, beat his man and square for his strike partner who calmly side-footed past Highsted to double the advantage.
As the clock ticked down towards half-time, Charlton enjoyed the vast majority of possession with right-back Harry Osborne in particular showing fantastic attacking prowess on more than one occasion down the right as the visitors looked to kill the Rams off.
Euell’s side continued in much the same fashion after the break and Monlouis very nearly netted a third when his good-looking shot from distance three minutes after the restart whistled just past the post.
But it would simply be a matter of time before the Addicks made it three.
On 52 minutes, Mikhail Kennedy latched onto a ball forward, ran into the box, controlled well before brushing past a defender and finishing expertly at the near post to put his side one step closer towards the final.
Shortly after, Osborne looked to cause further damage when he leathered a piledriver towards goal from all of 30 yards only for Highsted to get the slightest of touches to put it over for what should have been a corner. Bizarrely, the referee signalled for a goal-kick to kill the attack.
Charlton were in total control and the score would truly reflect that by the time Ahearne-Grant got in on the act with 18 minutes remaining, stretching his neck muscles to head Kennedy’s cross from the left in off the crossbar to effectively settle matters.
The Rams enjoyed their best spell of the game late on with Freeman Rogers directing a corner goalwards with a header which beat Dillon Phillips, only for Kennedy to be on hand to clear off the line to deny the home fans something to cheer about.
That would be the closest the hosts would come to putting a blemish on the Addicks’ clean sheet before Ansah fired Rhys Browne’s cross into the roof of the net to seal his hat-trick with the very last kick of the game as Euell’s men set up a meeting with Gillingham in the final for the right to lift the Kent Senior Cup.
Though Ansah has left Arsenal, it is believed that the club is still monitoring his progress as a player and could move back for him if he develops.
He trained with the Ghana U20 squad for the 2013 FIFA U20 World Cup but was dropped by head coach Sellas Tetteh and his technical team.
For more Ghana football news visit www.ghanasoccernet.com
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