09.04.2005 Football News

New-look Kotoko consoles fans

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Accra, April 9, GNA - Kumasi Asante Kotoko on Saturday, consoled their fans with a spirited performance on day one of the One Touch Football Gala competition when they defeated Sekondi Hasaacas 2-0 at the Ohene Djan Sports Stadium in Accra.

The victory rekindled the lost spirit of the team after they suffered a painful 1-0 defeat at the hands of Accra Hearts of Oak almost a week ago in the 2004 league decider at the same venue.

Kotoko, playing with virtually newly recruited players and those on trials, displayed their intention of carrying the day when they raided the area of Hassacas right from the blast of the referee's whistle. Even though Hasaacas also responded with occasional invasions, it the Fabulous lads who benefited from their raids but they failed to covert two God sent chances that came the way of Nasiru Ghani and Anas Mohammed.

Former Ashantigold defender, Kenneth Ababio, however opened the scores for Kotoko in the 12th minute of the first half when he delivered a well executed low free-kick that passed through a cluster of legs in the Hasaacas defence before entering the net.

Kotoko sustained the pressure on Hasaacas in the second half of the game with Ghani creating a lot of anxiety for the Hasaacas defence, but former Hearts player, Kenneth Sarpong on two occasions had his goal bound shots cleared off the line.

With the level of pressure on Hasaacas, it was evident that Kotoko were capable of scoring another goal and this materialised in the dying minutes of the game when Mohammed connected home Ghani's cross for his side's second goal.

Kotoko are now to battle it out with Tema Real Sportive in the quarter-final stage of the competition on day two of the competition on Sunday.

In the other matches, Ashantigold secured a lone goal victory over King Faisal from the boot of Shaibu Yakubu, whilst Eric Bekoe's header ensured the progress of Liberty Professionals into the quarter-finals in their opening match against Power FC.

2004 Premier league champions, Accra Hearts of Oak also pipped new entrants, Kade Hotpsurs while Gomoa Fetteh Feyenoord went past Ebusua Dwarfs with a lone goal victory in regulation time.

Real Tamale United (RTU), Heart of Lions and Real Sportive advanced to the quarter-finals through the penalty shoot out after their matches ended goalless in regulation time.

RTU won their match with a 3-2 win against Okwawu United, whilst Lions recorded a 4-3 win over Bofoakwa Tano with Sportive also going through on 4-3 win against Berekum Arsenals.

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