Canada's Marcus Haber (red jersey) races toward goal in an international friendly against Ghana in Washington, D.C., on October 13, 2015. (Photo: Tony Quinn/isiphotos.com)
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Marcel de Jong scored a brilliant goal from distance -- just the third of his international career -- to help Canada earn a 1-1 draw against Ghana in Tuesday evening’s international friendly at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium.
Albert Adomah netted the equalizer for Ghana, which entered the match with a No. 25 FIFA World Ranking, 79 spots above the North Americans.
Six players in all made their international debuts for Canada, including Queens Park Rangers winger Junior Hoilett.
The match was the final tune-up before Canada begins play in the fourth round of CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying, opening its six-match Group A schedule in Vancouver against Honduras on November 13.
Afforded time and space, de Jong put Canada ahead in the 30th minute with a stunning 35-yard strike into the top right corner to beat goalkeeper Razak Braimah.
With better finishing, Le Rouges might’ve led 2-0 by that point.
Tosaint Ricketts mishit his scissors kick after corralling de Jong’s cross in the 20th minute. Eight minutes later, Braimah denied Charlie Trafford’s shot from near the penalty spot, and Kianz Froese dragged the rebound wide of the left post.
Instead, Ghana tied it on the brink of halftime on a quick counter. Jordan Ayew played the final diagonal ball to Adomah, who raced through Canada’s offside trap to send a low finish past goalkeeper Kenny Stamatopoulos.
Canada continued to attack after halftime.
Braimah saved Ricketts' low driven strike to the near post in the 65th minute after Lucas Cavallini’s backheel freed Froese to set up the effort. Cavallini had his long-range effort deflected over the crossbar five minutes later.
On the other end, Ghana’s introduction of Lloyd Sam as a right-wing substitute led to several late chances.
In the 85th minute, his ball out wide sprung Phil Ofosu-Ayeh, whose dangerous cross narrowly missed waiting attackers. With two minutes remaining in normal time, the New York Red Bulls star’s cross to Waris Majeed was struck wide of the right post.