Goal scorer Sarfo Gyamfi is joined by his mates.

WAFA down, Hearts of Oak next

Posted on: Sat Mar 18, 2017 - Report by Bernard Nyankomago Yeboah

With their fine tenacity that saw them beat WAFA 1-0 on match day seven of the 2016/17 Premier League on Wednesday in Kumasi, Kotoko will turn their weapons on Hearts of Oak this Sunday on match day eight of the league competition. 

With confidence and a sense of purpose, Kotoko are prepared to work hard to be victorious like they did in their midweek duel, which had substitute winger, Frank Sarfo Gyamfi providing the vital winning goal in the 62nd minute. 

Eric Donkor delivered a nice cross from the left and Sarfo Gyamfi neatly nodded home at the blind side of goalie, Razak Abalora to grab Kotoko’s fourth home win this season. Kotoko are still second placed – tied on 17 points with leaders Aduana Stars who drew 0-0 at home with Medeama. Team Manager, Shilla Alhassan told Kotoko Express afterwards that, Hearts of Oak are now their immediate prey. “Hearts is the next target. Attention shifts to them” he said. 

Coach Zdravko Logarusic against WAFA changed his team effectively. Skipper, Amos Frimpong and Ollenu Ashitey returned from injury to earn a starting place. Returnee, Awal Mohammed also started in front of center backs, Ahmed Adams and Nafiu Awudu. Michael Akuffu kept his role in midfield and together with others, the team fared well. 

The first half was fairly balanced. WAFA however took firm control after 35 minutes but the Kotoko defence performed well to halt their attack. But for the squandering of chances, Kotoko would have had a big win. Ollenu Ashitey and Yakubu Mohammed were the worst culprits as they took turns to miss glorious chances in the first half. 

WAFA dared Kotoko and Cheick Omar caused a scare with his tricky grounder in the 41st minute which was competently dealt with by goalie, Felix Annan. Minutes later, Ollenu Ashitey, who earned applause with his skill and pace, taking on his markers brilliantly disappointed big time by shooting into the hands of goalie Abalora in a one-on-one situation. 

Shortly after the break, Sarfo Gyamfi replaced Abeiku Ainooson. Baba Mahama and Edwin Tuffour would come on for Awal Mohammed and Ollenu Ashittey later. Kotoko attacked more, mounting good pressure, which yielded results in the 62nd minute with goal. WAFA gave their all and launched raids in 72nd and 78th minutes but their search for the equaliser was fruitless. 

Substitute, Baba Mahama nearly made it two for Kotoko in the 80th minute but his fine shot from an acute angle was punched to safety by the WAFA goalie. Six minutes on, Emmanuel Gyamfi outpaced two opponents on the right wing and delivered a cross but the connection was missing as no Kotoko player was in the goal area. The workaholic Emmanuel Gyamfi and Man of the Match continued to torment WAFA till referee Issaka Afful ended the game. 

Kotoko: Felix Annan, Amos Frimpong, Ahmed Adams, Nafiu Awudu, Abeiku Ainooson/Frank Sarfo Gyamfi, Awal Mohammed/Baba Mahama, Emmanuel Gyamfi, Michael Akuffu, Eric Donkor, Yakubu Mohammed, Ollenu Ashitey/Edwin Tuffour. Bench: Isaac Amoako, Eric Osei Agyeman, Abass Mohammed, Kwame Boateng. 

WAFA: Razak Abalora, Gideon Waja, Caleb Amankwaa, Musah Nuhu, Abubakari Ibrahim, Ibrahim Abdul Wahab, Emmanuel Boateng, Cheick Omar Quadraogo/Prince Obeng Ampem, Komlan Agbegniadan, Richmond Lamptey/Umar Bashiru, Richard Danso. Bench: Mohammed Alhassan, Ibrahim Fofana, Richmond Ayi, Aminu Mohammed, Inusah Adam

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