2017 Africa Nations Cup, Group Stage 2017
  • Asamoah Gyan (21')

Asamoah Gyan sets Ghana goals record as Black Stars advance

Asamoah Gyan became Ghana's all-time top scorer in the African Nations Cup as the Black Stars edged Mali 1-0 in Port-Gentil to book their place in the quarterfinals.

The 31-year-old headed home from a Jordan Ayew corner in the 21st minute to take his tournament tally to eight and eclipse previous record holder Osei Kofi.

It gave Ghana their second straight win in Group D, having started their campaign with victory over Uganda last week.

Mali had gone into the game needing a win after their opening goalless draw against Egypt, and they were immediately put under pressure by one of the tournament favourites.

Andre Ayew fired wide in the early stages after being set up by Gyan, while for Mali the busy Molla Wague looked the best bet for opening the scoring.

Gyan's opener stifled any Mali momentum and the favourites continued to hold the upper hand, with Christian Atsu hitting a shot straight at defender Hamari Traore.

Ghana keeper Razak Brimah made a rare save to deny Moussa Marega at the start of the second half and the same player came close again moments later with a shot from a tight angle.

Jordan Ayew shot wide for Ghana but the underdogs were enjoying a good spell, with Salif Coulibaly the latest to steer a low shot just wide of target.

Substitute Moussa Doumbia maintained the pressure with a header just over the bar, then Traore found the side-netting with a volley from 25 yards.

Mali continued to push for an equaliser and came close again 10 minutes from time when substitute Kalifa Coulibaly sent a header agonisingly across the face of the six-yard box.