Despite Ghana’s one-all draw with Gabon, a result that dented their qualification changes to the knockout stage a huge blow, Friday, January 14, 2022, will forever reign in Andre Ayew’s memory.
The 32 year old recorded history when he scored the Black Stars’ only goal in the 17th minute to become the fourth player to score at least a goal at six different Africa Cup of Nations tournaments.
Ayew joins Zambia’s Kalusha Bwalya, Cameroon’s Samuel Eto’o and his compatriot Asamoah Gyan in the books of records.
The former West Ham United and Swansea forward scored in each of the 2010, 2012, 2015, 2017, 2019 editions previously and now 2021.
He was on target once in 2010, twice in 2012, thrice in 2015, twice and once in 2017 and 2019 respectively and we await to see if he will add more to his 2021 tally.
Eto’o, who is also the highest scorer in the history of the AFCON with 18 goals, achieved his feat in style by netting at least a goal in six consecutive tournaments in 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2010.
Bwalya who is one of the greatest footballers this continent has ever seen was the first to reach the milestone, he was on target at least once in 1986, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998 and 2000.
Ayew’s fellow countryman Gyan also did it style just like Eto’o netting at least a goal in six straight tournaments that is in 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2017.
Should he hang on to retirement and feature at the 34th edition to be held in Ivory Coast in 2023, Ayew stands a chance of starting his own chapter that others will follow, given that all the other three are all retired.
The Al Sadd player was also netting his 10th goal of AFCON and became the only 13th player to reach double figures.
The others are; Eto’o who is top of the list with 18 goals, Ivory Coast’s Laurent Pokou (14), Nigeria’s Rashidi Yekini (13), Egypt’s Hassan El-Shazly (12).
Egyptian Hossam Hassan, Cameronian Patrick Mboma and Ivorian Didier Drogba are tied on 11 goals.
On 10, Ayew joins five others; Mengistu Worku of Ethiopia, Ndaye Mulamba of DR Congo, Kalusha Bwalya of Zambia, Joel Tiehi of Ivory Coast and Francileudo Santos of Tunisia.