The Black Stars of Ghana will be looking to get on the board against the Panthers of Gabon. The Panthers recorded an unimpressive 1-0 win against Comoros in their first fixture whilst Ghana fell to the Atlas Lions in a scrappy game.
In their previous 11 games, Ghana have managed 5 wins to Gabon’s 3. However, all of Gabon’s wins have come in AFCON and World Cup qualifiers. In their 6 meetings in these types of matches, Gabon have a slight advantage, leading 3-2 with a solitary draw.
Both teams recorded similar stats in their first group games but were on opposite ends of the same scoreline.
Gabon had an xG of 0.2, marginally lower than Ghana’s 0.3. Ghana took one more shot (5) than the Panthers but both teams managed only two shots on target. Both teams could not manage to record possession above 40% with Gabon recording 37.0% to the Stars’ 38.4%.
Gabon, however, shaded the pass accuracy with 70.18% to 63.51%, probably due to their lower proportion of long passes (21.09%) as compared to (25.12%) for the Ghanaians.
Both teams were lousy in the final third, with an appalling pass accuracy of 43.9% and 43.2%, with the higher percentage belonging to the Gabonese.
With both teams being so similar on paper it seems like player quality will decide tonight’s match. It is worth noting the Ghanaians did it against the best team in the group whilst the Panthers played the worst team in the group. This, in my opinion, gives Ghana the edge.
In addition, our friends at AfroStat have given Ghana a 54.6% chance of winning with 1.5 expected goals. Gabon have a 16.7% chance with 0.5 expected goals. If we round up to whole numbers, they are expecting a 2-1 win as the most likely outcome.