ACCRA The Black Stars of Ghana recorded an emphatic 3-1 over the Mambas of Mozambique in their Group H qualifier for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament at the Accra Sports Stadium here Thursday.

Ghana maintained their 100 per cent record in the group with the third victory in as many outings to top the group with nine points while Mauritius and Rwanda both have three points after two matches and Mozambique prop up the table with three successive defeats.

The Stars gave an early indication of total dominance, with a swift build-up which saw Frank Acheampong picking up a through pass from Mubarack Wakaso before placing the ball beyond keeper Soares Soarez for the first goal in just the 5th minute.

For many it was a sign of goal feast, but it never materialised, although the Stars dominated proceedings and invaded the area of the Mozambicans on several occasions without a goal.

The Mambas hardly created any goal-scoring opportunity as the closest was a free-kick at the edge of the box in the 20th minute, which was wasted by Elis Palemba.

The Manbas made hard work at finding space in the Ghana defensive area.

Acheampong gave way for Jeffery Schlup after suffering an injury at the beginning of the first half.

The Black Stars were more aggressive and purposeful in the second half and succeeded with the second goal in 56th minute, when John Boye connected a rebound after Jordan Ayew’s corner kick created a melee in the area of the visitors.

Ghana increased the tally two minutes later through Jordan Ayew, who lapped on a cross floated onto his path by Wakaso and lobbed the ball over the goalkeeper.

Ghana could have made it four after Ayew’s conversion, but referee Boachib El Ahrach denied Madjid Warris a penalty after he was violently brought down by the keeper in the box.

The Mozambicans lifted their game in the later stages of the game with as Palemba’s cross was placed beyond keeper Razak Braimah by Apso Manjate in the 68th minute.

Ghana will meet Mozambique again on Sunday in the second leg encounter with the winner of the group advancing to the Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon early next year

Source: GNA