GHANA, MALI REACH FINAL OF UNDER-17 AFRICAN YOUTH FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIPS

ACCRA, Ghana's national under-17 football team, the Black Starlets, has qualified for the final of the African youth championship taking place in Gabon, the first time the country has qualified for the final since the 2005 competition in Gambia.

The Black Starlets beat Niger 6-5 on penalties following 0-0 draw within the 90 minutes of the semi-final at the Stade de Port Gentil on Wednesday and will now take on Mali in the final on Sunday.

Nigerien goalie Khaled Lawali Ibrahim had prevented the free-scoring Ghanaians from breaking the deadlock after several attempts. The Starlets also endured 90 minutes of pressure as they squandered several goal scoring opportunities.

During the penalty shootout, Ghana went through as winners after Emmanuel Toku neatly converted the 14th spot kick of the day.

In Libreville, goalkeeper Youssouf Koita was the hero for Mali as he safely guided the cup holders to their second consecutive final of the Under-17 Africa Cup of Nations with a 2-0 penalty shootout victory against Guinea at Stade l'Amitie.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK