Player ratings: How the Black Stars fared against Mali

Fatau Dauda: His handling of aerial situations was suspect. He punched when he could have caught and seemed hesitant in getting off the line whenever the crosses came in. He had his moments too especially went down low to save Bakary Sakho’s right footed effort. Overall though he was just ok 5/10

Harrison Afful: As always full of life, running and attacking intent. It was a typical Afful performance that leaned more towards supporting the attack from the right side rather stopping the opposition onslaught from the left. Overall a reasonably good display 6/10

Jeffrey Schlupp: In fairness to Jeffery Schlupp left back is not exactly his thing. He was played there a few times by Leicester but he it is not his strongest point and that told in a rare start for him. He was caught out of position too often, gave the ball away too many times and when he went up-field, his delivery didn’t do much to create openings or rattle the opposition 5/10

Daniel Amartey: The Denmark based defender had another decent evening in the Ghana shirt. He was strong in the air, his tackles looked well timed, and he played with the confidence of a man who looks like he will be snapping at the heels of both Jonathan Mensah and John Boye for a place in that central defence for a long time to come. 6.5/10

John Boye : John Boye is a player re-born and for the 55 minutes when he was involved, he held his own against the skilful Modibo Maiga well. He will be hoping the injury that forced him off is nothing serious 6/10

Agyemang Badu: Badu’s eye for goal paid off yet again when he got on the end of a sweet Richmond Boakye Yiadom pass benefitted from some slack goalkeeping. But the fact that he was there alone spoke volumes about his desire for goals. If the goal was typical Badu his general display was too. He was often caught out of position and in no man’s land. Apart from the goal, Afriyie Acquah would not have lost much sleep watching from the bench 6.5/10

Rabiu Mohammed: Ghana’s version of a water carrier in midfield; a player who shores up the mistakes of others, keeps simple, breaks and passes moves. If Rabui Mohammed has a fault he proved again today that it is being more assertive in his passing but as the main defensive man in midfield, he put in another good shift. 6.5/10

Christian Atsu: He was lively in the opening half and had the veteran Adama Tamboura back tracking every time he got on the ball. The final balls were not always so on point though even though he was still at the center of Ghana’s best moves. There was also the sense of that selfish streak that so often frustrates his team mates. With numbers in the box including Boakye Yiadom and Dede Ayew, he went for a curler when crossing for those players adept in the air could have yielded more. 6/10

Andre Ayew: Dede’s Ghana career seems to be shaping up this way: the big game player who is at his best when the stakes are high and plain average in other games. For all the willingness to get on the ball, he held on too long sometimes, didn’t pass well enough and didn’t provide the support behind Boakye Yiadom as the creative cog that Grant would have hoped for. He went off after about an hour. Even he would admit it wasn’t exactly one of his best days 5/10

Frank Acheampong: got the advanced midfield slot on the left side worked diligently to not only provide options upfront but support Schlupp at the back too. He got in some fairly decent balls too and put in a performance that backed up by his display against Senegal will strengthen his case for future call ups.

Richmond Yiadom Boakye:  Ghana’s best player and ironically the man who cost the Black Stars victory too. He was also perhaps the player who benefited most from the two friendly games. Over the 90 minutes he was involved in everything. He set up a goal, hit the post, committed a needless penalty and proved to everyone watching that long term, he deserves to be called up on a more regular basis. He showed great adaptability at playing on his own upfront and had chances too to make a stronger case.

He also proved he can be a provider, setting up Emmanuel Agyemang Badu for the first goal which was in truth aided by some poor Malian goalkeeping. But he had poor moments too especially when he pulled down a Malian attacker that allowed Bakary Sakho to cheekily turn in the resulting penalty for the equaliser.

Edwin Gyimah came on for John Boye on 55minutes and provided a few clues why he barely gets to play. He was a bit rash in the challenge lost out in most of his aerial balls and 50/50 challenges 5/10

Mubarak Wakaso was all pumped up when he replaced the ineffective Andre Ayew and while his firebrand approach helped inject a bit of urgency, it didn’t neccesarily inject quality, He was caught out on the ball too often picked up a yellow card all in that period of less than 30 minutes. 5/10

Kwesi Appiah could do no wrong at the Nations Cup. Now with the scrutiny on, the cracks seem to be appearing. He was a willing runner when he came on after 66 minutes for Christian Atsu  on 66minutes and played one stunning pass to Frank Acheampong as Ghana searched for the winner. Apart from that nothing noteworthy. 5/10

Jordan Ayew came on for Boakye Yiadom in 84 while  David Accam for Frank Acheampong 84 but players didn’t play long enough to earn ratings.

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