Hearts And Kotoko Display Their Prowess This Weekend
The nation's two representatives to the CAF Confederation cup, Kumasi Asante Kotoko and Accra Hearts of Oak go into action this weekend in search of victory in their encounters.
Hearts of Oak takes on Santos of South Africa in far away Johannesburg in a gruelling encounter on Sunday in a Group B affair. Hearts will rely on their recent form which has propelled them to sounding victories on the international and domestic front.
A fortnight ago Hearts walloped Sable d'Batie, an opponent in the confederation cup, by five goals to one at the Accra Sports Stadium and followed it up with two impressive victories in the gt Premier league against Hasaacas and Feyenoord.
The Phobians can't afford to lose this match if they are to secure the pole position in their group to guarantee them a place at the finals as any slip will jeopardise that chance because they currently are second in their group a point behind Cottonsport of Cameroon who will also lock horns with country fellow Sable d'Batie in Yaoundé and are expected to win the Yaoundé encounter.
Hearts, having found their scoring boots, are likely to parade improved and young goalie Mohammed Sani in post to be ably supported by Dan Quaye the rock of Gibraltar, skipper Amankwah Mireku, Dan Coleman, and Acquah Harrison.
Playing in the midfield will be Adjah Tetteh, Emmanuel Osei Kuffour and back to bantam Francis Bossman.
Strikers expected to feature on the rainbow will include revived Bernard Dong-Bortey, young predator Prince Tagoe and Louis Agyeman.
In an interview before departure for Johannesburg, Hearts Coach Cecil Jones Attuquayefio was optimistic of victory for his boys and said the team will take a leaf from the Cottonsport win in South Africa to record a convincing victory come Sunday.
In another encounter in Nigeria, Kumasi Asante Kotoko will try to collect the maximum points at stake when they take on Enugu Rangers in a Group A encounter.
Kotoko having recorded a face-saving draw against Petro Athletico two weeks ago without the services of skilful Charles Kwaku Amponmah Taylor and Skipper Joe Hendricks will be happy to have around the players that missed the boat to Angola when they engaged Enugu Rangers in a very gruelling match.
Kotoko's German technical head Hans Dieter Schmidts has a lot of players at his disposal to select from to do battle.
In post he is likely to feature George Owu, while Michael Ofosu Appiah, Godfred Yeboah, Issah Ahmed, and Skipper Joe Hendricks are expected to keep the Nigerian strikers at bay.
Yusif Chibsah who fetched the goal for Kotoko in Luanda, Kwaku Essien, Stephen Oduro will be expected to provide goal poachers Nana Arhin Duah, Charles Taylor, Shila Alhansan, Elvis Opoku, Michael Osei and Cameroonian import Imbola Sanjie the scoring chances.
Possessing the very best of players on the local scene at the moment Kotoko's coach Hans Dieter Schmidts is confident of victory for the Porcupine Warriors.
In the other Group A match El-Hilal of Sudan welcomes Petro Atheletico of Angola.
Victory is not far from both Ghanaian clubs if only the players will heed to the advice from their technical men in charge.