Sports News of Saturday, 29 July 2017
An inspirational performance by Right To Dream captain Mohammed Kudus secured a first SuperCupNI Premier final win for the Ghanaians in Northern Ireland on Friday.
The classy African outfit, who have won the Junior Section twice, found themselves a goal down to the Mexican giants Club America with 15 minutes to go.
But cometh the hour, cometh the man as Kudus found the net twice in the last 11 minutes to seal the win for his side.
It is their second title in Europe in one week after sealing the Gothia Cup U17 tournament in Sweden last week.
Right To Dream looked on song from the first whistle. Kevin Ofori’s shot on three minutes was parried away by Sanchez Duran, with King Baidoo’s follow-up blocked by the defence.
Four minutes later, Kelvin Owusu-Boateng glanced Mikkel Damsgarrd’s whipped cross wide of the far post.
Mohamed Diomande was next to try his luck but his long-range effort was straight at Duran with 12 minutes gone.
Vargas Rios followed suit at the other end three minutes later, however, he couldn’t find the target.
On 18 minutes, Kudus drew another save out of Duran as Right To Dream pressed in search of an opener.
Ofori and Diomande linked up well on 20 minutes – with the latter’s clever backheel teeing up the former – but he dragged his shot wide of the target.
Club America wasted a great opportunity to trouble the Ghanaians, but Luis Tinajero failed to control Luis Saenz’s clever flick pass, which put him through on goal.
The Mexicans had a let-off on the half-hour mark as Duran spilled Kudus’ low cross but the keeper recovered to gather the ball at the second attempt.
Two minutes before the break Emmanuel Duko played in Owusu-Boateng but Duran was out quickly to block his effort.
Right To Dream still looked the most likely to score after the restart.
Damsgarrd showed great feet to create an opening on 41 minutes, but his powerful shot never troubled Duran.
The impressive Kudus tested Duran again from distance on 46 minutes, before Perez Osuna fired wide at the other end a minute later.
Marcus Gudmann made a great recovery tackle on 52 minutes to steal the ball off Juarez Galvan after the defender had initially been caught in possession.
There was nothing Right To Dream could do four minutes later as Club America broke the deadlock.
They were awarded a free-kick on the right-hand side of the penalty area and up stepped Santiago Rios to curl a delightful shot into the far corner of the net.
The lead lasted only three minutes though as Kudus raced on to a great cross from Diomande to head past Duran. The skipper wasn’t finished just yet.
With four minutes to go he picked up a loose ball in midfield before surging past two defenders and producing a sublime finish over Duran.