Ghana rout Congo to keep World Cup hopes

A hat-trick from Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey inspired Ghana to a 5-1 in Congo in Group E of World Cup qualifying.

The win was Ghana’s first in the group – at the fourth time of asking – and came four days after being held to a 1-1 draw at home by the same opponents.

Partey, 24, scored his first international goal in that game.

Richmond Boakye grabbed a brace as Congo, whose Vladis Illoy Ayyet scored a consolation, suffered elimination.

The Red Devils have just one point from four games and can no longer qualify for Russia 2018.

Ghana, meanwhile, move up to five points, behind Egypt, who have six points, facing Uganda, who boast seven, in Alexandria later yesterday.

Congo had started the game in Brazzaville strongly but were overpowered after the Black Stars opened the scoring against the run of play through Boakye after 23 minutes, with Partey doubling that lead just three minutes later.

In a topsy-turvy spell just before half-time, Illoy Ayyet scored his first goal for Congo after 43 minutes only for Partey to spin cleverly and fire home Christian Atsu’s pass from a tight angle in first-half stoppage time.

With 21 minutes left on the clock, Partey resembled a seasoned striker as he lashed into the top corner after 69 minutes to seal his hat-trick.

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