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30.04.2007 Football News

Hearts of Oak lift premiership cup

By myjoyonline

The actors finish some 30 weeks of grueling performances as Ghana's elite league season comes to end with some sweet and sour tales.

All the 16 clubs kicked off their 30th matches in the 30-game league simultaneously but at halftime, the title and relegation picture was very revealing.

At the end of the thrilling climax to the premiership Feyenoord, Bofoakwa Tano and Power FC could not take the ascendancy but rather took a drive down the log as they have been relegated from the elite division.

Though the final day results never altered the standings at the top after the Phobians had clinched the title on match-day-29, it determined the positions for the second Champions League place which was picked up by AshantiGold.

Hearts of Oak who had been partying for a week now assembled a strong side and posted a 1-0 victory over Berekum Arsenals at the Robert Mensah Stadium in Cape Coast.

Stanley Afedzie, scored the game's only goal in the 35th minute to cap a tough season for the Phobians after a rather poor start.

Hearts won the season with five points clear over the Gunners.

The result deflects the hopes of the Gunners for a top four place which would have secured them a Confederation Cup berth.

But the most dreaded positions that was still been avoided was the relegation battle which was the centre of attraction aside the places for continental football.

With the exception of Power FC who had long been relegated by match-day-25, two other sides Feyenoord and Bofoakwa Tano on the final day of matches bid goodbye to the elite ranks after failing to pick up wins at home.

Kotoko, who were third before Sunday's round of matches, put behind them their failed title defence and mounted a challenge for the second position though too late after they romped to a 5-3 victory over Great Olympics at the Nkawkaw Park.

A brace by Douglas Nkrumah in the 18th and 33rd minutes put the Porcupine Warriors the lead before Emmanuel Clottey pulled one back for the Wonder Boys in the 40th minute.

Then on the stroke of time, substitute Francis Akwaffo scored to make 3-1 for Asante Kotoko.

Back from recess, Emmanuel Clottey grabbed a brace when he cut down Kotoko's lead with a goal on the 46th minute.

However, in the 55th minute, Emmanuel Osei Kuffour restored Kotoko's double lead when he grabbed the fourth goal for the Porcupine Warriors.

After 74 minutes, Asante Kotoko was leading 5-2 with winger Ofosu Amoah scoring the fifth goal.

And two minutes after the goal, Emmanuel Clottey grabbed a hat-trick when he scored in the 76th minute to register the premiership's second hat-trick.

The eight-goal thriller win for Asante Kotoko did little to deliver for them the second position which could have secured them a Champions League place as they rather settle for a Confederation Cup spot.
But AshantiGold picked up a win to consolidate their hold of the second position and snatched the second Champions League ticket with a 1-0 win over Feyenoord at the Swedru Park.

Feyenoord, who were third from bottom before the game needed a win to improve their chances of avoiding the drop were left disappointed as the Miners picked the booty courtesy a 66th minute strike by Alex Asamoah.

Asamoah's strike secured the second position for the Miners.

From disappointment to despair at the Coronation Park, where the derby clash between Bofoakwa Tano and King Faisal ended goalless, a result which leaves Bofoakwa Tano relegated.

The home side saw further red in the course of the game as attacker Isaac Donkor was shown the red card in the second half.

Bofoakwa Tano needed a win to improve escape relegation but waved the white flag before an expectant home crowd as they look to prepare for life in the division one next season.

In Tamale, Real Tamale United stayed clear off the drop zone when they managed to settle the day before the 25th minute.

The Pride of the North continued with the impressive home form with a 2-0 win over Real Sportive at the Kaladan Park courtesy strikes from Faisal Sulemana in the 5th minute and Nasiru Ghani in the 23rd minute.

Real Sportive had Emmanuel Afful sent off in the 30th minute after being shown the red card.

Relegated Power FC played their last game in the elite ranks at home and though with nothing to lose, left the premiership on a losing note as Heart of Lions handed them their 19th league defeat.

Sadat Bukari scored Hearts of Lions' 40th goal of the season from a spot kick in the 36th minute against Power FC at the Ho sports stadium.

The club owned by the state's electricity supplier company have drop out of the elite campaign with 18 points to their credit in a rather poor season having lost 19 games and conceded 51 goals.

Hearts of Lions thus pick up a ticket for the Confederation Cup as they maintain their fourth place.

At the Carl Reindorff Park, Liberty Professionals brushed aside Gamba All Blacks with a 3-1 victory.

Goals from Michael Osei in the 4th minute, Kwadwo Asamoah in the 44th minute won the day for the Dansoman-based side.

In the second half, substitute, Kofi Nti Boakye scored to make it 3-0 in the 68th minute.
With four minutes to end proceedings, Richard Ampong grabbed a consolation goal for the Black Magicians when he scored the 86th minute.

Sekondi Hasaacas went down 1-2 to Tema Youth at the Gyandu Park, a result which does not affect the standings in the elite division.

Kweku Arthur put the home side in the lead after 66 minutes but the Giants of the West crumbled with seven minutes to go at Tema Youth rallied back to score two goals in the dying minutes.

Kweku Koomson put Tema Youth on level pegging in the 83rd minute before Stephen Adjei with just a minute to end the game scored the match winner for the away team.

GFA

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