Accra, Dec 16, GNA - Accra Hearts of Oak Sporting Club have declared that they will participate in the next edition of the Ghana League Clubs Association (GHALCA) Top Four Competition scheduled for next year. Hearts are the automatic qualifiers for the competition after placing second in the 2005 premiership.
Even though the commencement of the competition is far from sight, archrivals, Kumasi Asante Kotoko have decided to withdraw from the competition citing pressure from their supporters as the reason for their decision.
Information gathered by the GNA Sports reveals that supporters of Kotoko claim the Chairman of the Association, Mr Joseph Yaw Appiah dislikes the 2005 League Champions and has been biased towards them on many occasions.
Mr Ashford Tettey-Oku, Administrative Manager of Hearts told the GNA Sports that the Club received a letter from the Association inviting them to participate in the event and they have responded positively to it.
According to Mr Tettey-Oku, Hearts is ready to support the Association in all endeavours since they are members of GHALCA. Hearts, regular participants in the competition since its inception in 2002 were the winners of the maiden edition.
The competition is obviously one of the most popular events on the local scene having attracted huge sponsorship from some big firms in the country including Coca Cola Ghana Limited and LG Electronics among others.
Following this, the tournament has been the major target of most Premier League Clubs during each league season.
It would be noted that the first edition was boycotted by Kotoko while the last was abandoned midway by the same club after a penalty was awarded against them in a match against Kpando Heart of Lions at the Ohene Djan Sports Stadium in Accra.
The withdrawal of Kotoko led to the imposition of huge sanctions on the Club with some of the Premier League Clubs disassociating themselves from the team's action.