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Kotoko 3-1 Hearts: Can Kotoko repeat the Tamale story of 2017?

It is increasingly becoming difficult for Kumasi Asante Kotoko in their quest to book a continental slot for 2021/22 season. The Porcupine Warriors have already missed out on the CAF Champions League spot after losing out the 2020/21 Ghana Premier League title to arch rivals, Accra Hearts of Oak. The record Ghana Premier League holders were highly tipped to win the 2020/21 league title following a massive recruitment and sponsorship drive by the Nana Yaw Amponsah led administration. That notwithstanding, Kotoko failed to win the league title with one matche to close the season.

Asante Kotoko were at a point neck-to-neck on points with Hearts of Oak, leaving pundits in a web over which club to tip for the league title. The Porcupine Warriors suffered a harsh reality on match day 31 when they fell to Hearts of Oak at the Accra Sports Stadium. A solitary strike by Daniel Afriyie Barnieh dented the hopes of Kotoko. The defeat ensured Hearts of Oak stretched their lead over Kotoko by three points with three games remaining to end the season. Moving into week 32, Kotoko were held 1-1 by King Faisal with Hearts of Oak drawing 1-1 against Dwarfs at the Cape Coast Stadium leaving the points difference between them at three.

The week 33 however proved to be a decider for both clubs as Hearts of Oak needed three points to be crowned league champions. The win will mean Hearts of Oak will claim their 21st and first league title for the first time in 11-years. Kotoko also hoped that Hearts of Oak will falter in week 33 for them to win and send the final game of the season to the wires. That however did not happen as Hearts of Oak drew 1-1 against Liberty Professionals at the Accra Sports Sports Stadium with Asante Kotoko dropping all three points at the Nana Fosu Gyeabour Park in a 2-1 defeat against Bechem United. The two results meant that Hearts of Oak went on 61 points, four better than Kotoko with just one game to end the season. Hearts of Oak will get a guard of honour at Sogakope in their final league game against WAFA on Saturday, July 17. Kotoko will wrap up their season with a home game against strugglers, Elmina Sharks on Sunday, July 18.

Asante Kotoko after missing out on the 2020/21 Ghana Premier League title to Hearts of Oak must look elsewhere for a continental slot. The only opportunity they have is the MTN FA Cup. The two time CAF Champions League winners are into the quarter finals of the competition and will face Berekum Chelsea in the last eight. Kotoko are the second highest holders of the competition with nine titles, one behind record holders, Hearts of Oak. The Porcupine Warriors will want to return to Africa after several failed attempts to glitter. Coming up against Berekum Chelsea who have played in the CAF Champions League in the 2010/11 season, will be a tough task. Can Kotoko beat Chelsea to progress to the next stage and probably win it?

Talking about winning the MTN FA Cup, the last time Kotoko won it was four years ago. Kotoko smashed three goals past rivals, Hearts of Oak at the Tamale Sports Stadium with Hearts of Oak replying just once. Hearts of Oak are equally into the quarter finals of the FA Cup against Elmina Sharks and that makes it a tough one. The question is , will Asante Kotoko repeat the feat they achieved in 2017 by beating Kotoko 3-1 or will Hearts of Oak revenge, that is if both clubs qualify for the finals?

Content created and supplied by: AdamuMuftawu (via Opera News )

Asante Kotoko Ghana Premier League Hearts Kumasi Asante Kotoko Tamale

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