It was yet another exciting episode in week five of the Ghana Premier League, and here are five highlights from the action-packed matchday.
Duncan gets a breather, but for how long?
For a moment, it appeared coach David Duncan was headed for the exit, even if Kotoko’s management had failed to admit, but a 78th minute Kwame Boateng strike on Friday all but puts rumours of an imminent dismissal to rest – at least for now.
After 450 minutes of football, Kotoko finally found their first win of the season in a 1-0 defeat of Sekondi Hasaacas at home. It wasn’t particularly vintage, but they wouldn’t care. The Porcupine Warriors have subsequently moved out of the bottom three ahead of matchday six clash with Aduana Stars. Although back to winning ways, Duncan will be first to admit he’s still far from safety and Friday’s triumph will eventually come to naught if he can’t mastermind victory in Dormaa.
Bekoe not loved in Kumasi anymore
Hasaacas’ Eric Bekoe was nothing short of a poster boy during his lone season stint with Kotoko in 2007-08. With 17 goals in 23 matches, the striker did not just claim the league’s top scorer’s gong, but led the Porcupine Warriors to the topflight title. Consequently, Friday’s clash between Hasaacas and Kotoko in Kumasi was more of an anticipated glorious home-coming than anything.
After 90 minutes, however, the striker had paradoxically turned public enemy No.1 following a series of alleged offensive gestures to the home fans and a bust-up with Duncan. While the outspoken coach claims Bekoe showed him a ‘you-talk-too-much’ gesture, the striker alleges that he was verbally abused by the coach for no reason. It’s unclear where the truth lies. What is agreeably apparent, though, is that the striker took just 90 minutes to undo a cult status he toiled for over a whole season.
Hearts have character
Hearts of Oak have undoubtedly been the best team so far this season, having won all but one game ahead of matchday five – a deadlock at Dwarfs. Their early exploits had steered them two points clear atop of the league table. But they had yet to be given that ‘true test’ – the kind that would warrant a dive into their inner strength.
On Sunday, nonetheless, they were handed the opportunity to prove their greatness by Inter Allies, and that they took so well. The Phobians had fallen two goals down by the 68thminute, and all was apparently headed for an end of streak. However, a late Ibrahim Musah’s double, involving a stoppage time winner, turned things around in dramatic a fashion – a true test of character that was.
Ashgold are in a fix
It’s hard to accept that Ashanti Gold are actually the league’s defending champions until you are reminded of a side called Chelsea in the English Premier League. At that point, you’re forced to come to a conclusion that things could perhaps have turned out worse.
The Obuasi-based side recorded their fourth consecutive draw on Saturday, a one all draw with struggling Aduana Stars. Nonetheless, they sit an appreciable seventh on the league log, largely aided by a matchday one 3-2 defeat of Medeama. At one instance, you could be tempted into thinking that their unsuccessful participation in the Caf Champions League this year somewhat affected their concentration.
Techiman City demand a little more respect
Unlike Sunday’s match opponents Dreams FC, no one seems to be talking about Techiman City. But just like Dreams, they are one of the newly-promoted sides and must be given as much commendation as has been accorded Dreams in their early good run.
Yusif Abubakar’s side have won three of five games so far in what has led to a current fourth spot on the standings. Sunday’s 1-0 triumph over Dreams – the latter’s first defeat of the season – was just another feather in their cap. Slowly but stealthily, City have moved a place above the Dawu-based side and deserve just enough credit for that.