On a day when league broadcaster gave us two live games from the Cape Coast Stadium (3pm and 6pm kick off), some of the football was delectable. And across the country, interesting story lines came up, as we see out eight of them.
Wild start for Dreams FC
Coach Karim Zito’s charges have begun the new season in an impressive fashion. They are without a defeat with two victories and a draw. They beat Wa All Stars at the Cape Coast Sports Stadium on the back of a 1-1 drawn game away at Bechem. Forward Zubeiru Sharani’s sixth minute strike was enough to condemn the visitors to their second defeat of the season. This is exactly the start Dreams FC longed for to secure a premier league status for next season via hard work, something their manager revealed after the game in an interview.
“It is hardwork and then sense of discipline on the field of play. When you have players who listen to you, things will go right” said Karim Zito.
It is a dream start for Dreams FC. Can they sustain the momentum? Only time will tell.
Hunters hunted at the Nana Ameyaw Park
Bechem United - the hunters - travelled to Techiman in search of a second successive win but they walked out of the Nana Ameyaw Park battered and mauled. Techiman Eleven Wonders played their best game of the season at home. Abdul Wahab grabbed a brace taking his tally for the season to three, with Vincent Adu-Gyamfi wrapping an excellent afternoon with a goal to snuff out any chance of a comeback. The game was already home and dry when the pummelled hunters desperately snatched a consolation through Maxwell Frimpong. It was a well-deserved victory, as they were relentless all afternoon, rendering their opponents clueless. Five points from nine, still unbeaten…what a way to begin the journey in the top flight of Ghana football!
Below par WAFA good enough to down holders
After a convincing win at Karl Reindorf, WAFA turned up against defending champs Aduana in Sogakope far from their usual best. At the Red Bull Arena, you'd always expect WAFA to go gung-ho and they did not do so against Aduana. Maybe this is another side to their game - where they play cautiously and almost flat, but still get the job done. It is not surprising that they managed to take all three points or avoided a defeat. The stats show their imperious home form, as they've gone 46 games unbeaten since 2015. On a day they were far from their best, a goal each from Aminu Mohammed and Nuhu Musah fetched them the needed three points.
Wa All Stars have serious problems
The coach of Wa All Stars, Abubakari Sokpori, has his job cut out for him. His team has serious fundamental problems and he must act swiftly to solving them if they are to remain a premier league club come next season. Before the game against Dreams FC, the team from Wa had failed to score in any of their last three games. Already this season, they have yet to hit the back of an opponent’s net, picked two balls from their own net, lost twice and drawn once. This is definitely not the way to go as a former champion. They must work on the weaknesses ASAP (i.e. scoring goals and winning games) and must be as quick as possible, because there is no time. 360 minutes of football without a goal? That's bad!
The Miners can dig deep
When the going gets tough, the tough don’t implode and bottle. The tough simply get going until the objective is achieved. AshantiGold thus far are showing clear signs of a championship winning side. The game against Karela FC was perceived to be a stroll in the park for the Obuasi-based club but it panned out to be a tough one. It was a win AshGold really had to work for. Charles 'CK' Akonnor seems to have found his best XI, as he named an unchanged XI from the one which humiliated Hearts of Oak at the weekend - and it paid dividends. They remain the only team with a 100% record, and have laid down the marker.
Fantastic Annan, never mind Felix
Kotoko lost 1-0 at the T&A Park but one man who stood between Medeama and a trouncing of the Porcupine Warriors was shot-stopper, Felix Annan. He made six excellent saves much to the frustration of the home side.
For a goalkeeper to be commended and applauded by almost everyone inside the T&A Park speaks volumes of his unblemished day at the office. If, and only IF, he can keep this fine performance and improve, then, a call up to the senior national team is not far away.
Liberty have no freedom
Liberty Professionals have begun the new season on a disappointing note. Two games, two defeats, one goal scored and five conceded is awful. After a dismal outing against WAFA at the Karl Reindorf, a positive reaction was the least required of them. Instead, they turned up almost the same way they did last time against WAFA. Inter Allies didn’t deny the invitation to beat the scientific soccer lads. Nothing seems to be working for Liberty; they are in dire need of invigoration. They need to be freed from the grasps of lethargy. Where their liberty comes from remains a mystery, but someway somehow, they have got to steer their season on the right road before it gets late. Rock bottom on the leaderboard with a game in hand? Maybe they can do it...
Aminu Mohammed steals the show
A goal each in his last three games deserves some mentioning. It is not only his goals, it is his overall output and understanding of the game that have improved tremendously at least in the opening games. At 17, WAFA is the right environment to develop his immense budding potential. The penny seems to have dropped for Aminu Mohammed and it bodes well for all parties involved - WAFA and, ultimately, Ghana.
Medeama need better form all round.
Home is where the heart is, but for Medeama to have got their first back-to-back home wins since 2012/13 is a damning indictment on their form in Tarkwa. If they want to mount any serious title challenge, that has to change. Home form is vital to any team's top four chances, as travelling away in these climes can be problematic.
Thumbs up StarTimes
StarTimes have been getting good feedback for sticking to their guns in the matter of broadcasting a double-header. It's important to note that this action is the first time in league history a broadcaster is doing so FROM THE SAME VENUE. We've had double headers before, when OMP/Metro TV held the rights some eight years ago, but they showed games from two separate venues, and never from the same place.
* Dwarfs 'host' Hearts at the Cape Cpast Stadium on Thursday. Host is in inverted commas because that ground is also their temporary home, as the Accra Sports Stadium goes under the hammer for renovation.
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