Real Sportive pip BA United
Accra, August 15, GNA - Ralph Oniyah marched Real Sportive on to the second stage of the Ghana League Clubs Association (GHALCA) Novelty Knockout competition with a first half goal in their uncompromising game against B. A. United at the Accra Sports Stadium on Sunday.
Sportive reached the next stage on a 2-1 aggregate having drawn one all in the first game played in Sunyani two weeks ago.
The lucky victory was made possible when United's goalkeeper, Lovelace Neequaye watched with anguish as his own pass deflected on the body of Oniyah into the net in the 15th minute after failing to make a timely save.
The visitors however had themselves to blame for failing to convert any of the chances that they created after getting the best of the exchanges.
Coach Emmanuel Kwasi Afranie's team played a well-composed game which compelled Sportive to retreat and overstretch to their elastic limit on most occasions right from the blast of the whistle.
Playing a more coherent game in the engine room but with their midfield trio of Moro Awudu, Alhaji Abass and Kwasi Boateng overshadowed by their host's, the visitors created countless scoring chances which were rather wasted by the Abedi Sarfo led attack. The striker exhibited incompetence in finishing off the decent chances that came his way with the homesters rear, pivoted around Eric Djangmah always at the thick of affairs working over time to deny the "Apostles of Ghana Soccer" from pulling even.
Goalkeeper Laud Quartey scored a full mark in his confrontation with Osman Sakora when he parried a well-taken shot to touch after a striker raced beyond his markers from a set up from the middle. Kwasi Boateng messed up yet another good opportunity that could have thrown the game into the lottery of penalties but he incredibly shot wide with only goalkeeper Quartey at his mercy with only 15 minutes of regulation time left.
Sportive might have won the game but they would be the first to admit that their performance against the goal shy United team was not the best as they failed to capitalise n their numerical advantage after Moro Awudu was shown the exit for a second bookable offence for rough play in the last quarter of the game.
At Obuasi, AshantiGold scaled over Accra Hearts of Oak to the stage of the GHALCA Novelty special Knockout competition when they beat them 5-3 on penalties in the second leg match at the Len Clay sports stadium. George Erano scored the only goal in the early stages of the second half to cancel Hearts one goal lead secured in the first leg at the Accra Sports stadium last Wednesday.
Much as both teams tried to take the lead, none of them managed to do so until the penalty shoot-out determined the decider. AshantiGold, determined to erase the dominance of Hearts over them converted all their five kicks whilst hearts managed to score only three of theirs to set the home fans into wild jubilation.