An overstretched Ghana side lost 2-3 to Nigeria in the Group A opener of the Men's Olympic Games played in Abuja yesterday.
The Black Meteors played a greater part of the second half of the game with 10 men after attacker Haminu Draman was shown the red card at a time the scoreline stood at 2-2.
The Nigerians jumped into the lead under three minutes courtesy a goal by Obinna Nsofor.
But on the fifth minute mark, Prince Tagoe drew level for Ghana when he completed an effort by Haminu Draman.
Asamoah Gyan doubled the lead for Ghana to silence the partisan crowd when he scored from a beautiful free kick in the 19th minute.
The Nigerians fought back and equalised from Obinna Nsofor who scored from a spot kick in the 35th minute to send the game into recess.
Back from recess Meteors' strength was reduced to 10 men just eight minutes into the half when Haminu Draman was shown a straight red card.
The Meteors never relented in their attack as they pushed for the lead, and in one of such attacks Prince Tagoe's shot at goal bounced off the upright. The Nigerians reacted on the counter to score the third goal through Solomon Okoronko.
Black Meteors coach, Cecil Jones Attuquayefio, effected three changes in the second half, bringing on Sadat Bukari, Jonathan Quartey and Michael Akuffo for Asamoah Gyan, Isaac Vorsah and Alfred Arthur but Ghana could not pull an equaliser.
Ghana are grouped with Nigeria, Ethiopia and South Africa in Abuja Group A, with the qualifiers being played in a league format between June and March 2008. Three group winners qualify for the final tournament at the Beijing Games.
Line up: Eric Nii Baah, Daniel Addo, Alfred Arthur/Michael Akuffo, Isaac Vorsah/Jonathan Quartey, Bawa Mumuni, Haminu Draman, Yao Kumordzi, Anthony Annan, Michael Helegbe, Asamoah Gyan/Sadat Bukari and Prince Tagoe.