Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Soccer team defeats U-17 Ghana

In an exhibition game against the U-17 Ghana team, the Crimson Tide met Ghana with skill and expertise – demonstrating that the fall season was behind it. Although the seniors weren’t on the field Tuesday night, Alabama rose up to the challenge letting the younger players taste the competition. Alabama ended the exhibition game 1-0 over Ghana.

On a tour throughout the southeast, the U-17 Ghana team is practicing with other teams in preparation for the U-17 World Cup in Costa Rica on March 15. Alabama has met Ghana once before, back in 2010, but coach Todd Bramble said this game was the game his team needs during the spring season.

“I think we showed some maturity tonight,” Bramble said. “[Back in 2010] that was a game where we were down two goals in the first half and had to find a way to tie it up and remain in the game. Tonight we scored a goal pretty early on and it was a good game after that, but I think this type of game makes us better. It’s a really cool experience for our soccer development and the games we’re playing in the spring and in the offseason. This was a fantastic opportunity and a great experience.”

(See also “Fans help hitchhiking soccer stars“)

The lone point came in the third minute of the game due to an own-goal, but Ghana’s coach Abraham Allotey said this was exactly what the team needed before going into the World Cup.

“I’m not giving the defeat to the weather, we played against a good side,” Allotey said. “It was a good side, I must confess. The game is only a win, lose or draw. And we were defeated. [Alabama] played better. I also see it as a good challenge for my team. Though I wish we would meet them next time and then see how [we’ve grown] on my side.”

Ghana, who will play Korea on March 15, has been touring around America before traveling to Costa Rica. Allotey said his team had a hard time penetrating Alabama’s defense tonight. When it comes down to the World Cup, this exhibition was positioned at the right time for Ghana.

“It was a good challenge for me [and my team],” Allotey said. “We have been in the United States for five days. We played against University of Alabama at Huntsville on Sunday and won 5-0. Looking at that game compared to this game, this was a high profile game for my country. So I’m happy. I wish we played [Alabama] a second time.”

(See also “UA club soccer team focusing on building chemistry“)

Junior Pia Rijsdijk said the opportunity was really exciting and good for her team, which is currently rebuilding after the fall season.

“I think it’s always a great opportunity to play teams out of the country,” Rijsdijk said. “They always bring something new or something different to the table that we might not be used to so there’s always a challenge. We work the way we want to play and we have to expect unexpected things and adjust to that. They have something, some great skills.”

Ghana will play Memphis on Thursday while the Crimson Tide will play UAH on March 16.

(See also “U.S. soccer team deserves national respect“)

More to Discover