Madagascar coach, Romuald Rakotondrabe, says his team could not find a way to stop Majeed Ashimeru when he was subbed on for the Black Stars in Friday’s 2026 World Cup qualifier.
The Anderlecht midfielder made the difference after he was brought on in the second half at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium to spark Ghana’s game to life.
Before Ashimeru came on, the team lacked a ball progressor, seeing the play of the Black Stars very disjointed.
His energy and surging runs eventually led to Inaki Williams scoring a 95th minute winner for Ghana to kick off their Group I games on a winning start.
Speaking after the game, the Madagascar coach was full of praise for the impact of the the 26-year-old made in the game.
“We had the better chances and we hit the bar. But that is football; we missed our chance, and they scored theirs. I take responsibility because I am the coach. I take the blame for what happened,” Romuald Rakotondrabe said.
“In the first 45 minutes, we were able to challenge Ghana. In the second half, he brought Majeed Ashimeru, and that changed everything. I told the boys to stop him because he brought energy. We tried and tried [but it did not work].”
The Black Stars will play Comoros on Tuesday in their second qualifier in Moroni to end the November international break.
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