Ghana wins warmup before World Cup opener
MIAMI (AP) — Striker Jordan Ayew scored a hat trick after entering the game as a substitute Monday as Ghana won its warmup match for next week’s World Cup by beating South Korea 4-0.
Ghana plays the United States next Monday in Natal, Brazil. The Black Stars eliminated the Americans from the World Cup in 2006 and 2010.
“We want USA!” Ghana fans chanted in the second half.
Forward Abdul Majeed Waris left the game in the fourth minute with a left leg injury and was replaced by Ayew, who scored in the 13th minute when his shot from 15 yards deflected off defender Ki Sung-yueng and past goalkeeper Jung Sung-ryong.
Ayew sent a strike into the corner of the net from 23 yards in the 53rd minute, and scored from close range in the 89th off a pass from Albert Adomah.
Asamoah Gyan, who scored the goal that clinched Ghana’s win over the Americans four years ago, stole the ball from Kwak Taehwi near midfield, dribbled 20 yards past Kim Young-gwon and scored from 15 yards in the 44th minute.
Gyan and his teammates then celebrated with the azonto, a dance from Ghana popular in clubs there. The show of attack was a big improvement for Ghana, which lost its previous two friendlies 1-0 to Montenegro and the Netherlands.
The last friendly for the two teams before the World Cup drew a small but enthusiastic crowd of less than 5,000 in NFL team the Miami Dolphins’ 75,000-seat stadium.
The crowds will be bigger in Brazil. South Korea’s first game will be against Russia at Cuiaba on June 17.
Ghana’s speedy but disciplined defense limited South Korea to a handful of scoring chances. Lee Chung-yong shot barely wide of the goal from 15 yards in the 15th minute, and Kim Bo-kyung sent a shot wide from 12 yards in the 67th minute. Ghana ’keeper Fatau Dauda knocked away a shot by Son Heung-min in the 40th minute.
Andre Ayew of Ghana missed with a scissors kick from close range in the 38th minute.
Jordan Ayew and teammate Mohammed Rabiu shook off a head-to-head collision midway through the first half.