So much focus is put on Ghana’s exploits at the 2010 World Cup, that it’s become easy to overlook their Nations Cup campaign earlier that year, when they held a magnificent Egypt team for 85 minutes in the final before Gedo broke Black Stars hearts.
Up to that point, the West Africans had dispatched Togo, Angola and Nigeria en route to the final, with Asamoah Gyan and Andre Ayew in particularly exceptional form.
Those two would again be central to Ghana’s campaign at the World Cup in South Africa, as Milovan Rajevac’s talented side became only the third African team to reach the quarter-finals at the grandest stage of all.
Amidst the notoriety of the latter stages of the Stars’ campaign, their opening 1-0 victory over an excellent Serbia team and subsequent 1-1 draw with Australia in Rusenburg have largely been overlooked, with Gyan the goalscorer on both of those occasions.
In the Last 16, again, Baby Jet stole the show, netting a 93rd-miute extra-time winner against the United States to set up that infamous quarter-final against Uruguay.
This Ghana side, even without injured Michael Essien, were more than plucky upstarts, building on the form they’d shown in 2006, marrying athleticism and power with a technical quality and vibrancy in attack.
It was only the Hand of Suarez—and that missed Gyan penalty—that denied them a spot in the final four as Africa’s first ever semi-final representatives.