A ten-man Hearts of Oak put up a resolute defensive display to hold arch-rivals Kotoko in a pulsating goalless drawn game at the Baba Yara stadium in Kumasi on Sunday. Â Â Â
The game produced many exciting moments with Laryea Kingston engineering the Hearts midfield with some sublime performances at the Baba Yara stadium.
Hearts were the better side in the first half but Kotoko looked dangerous upfront with Issaka Yakabu stinging the hands of goalkeeper Tetteh Lugard twice.
Kingston was by the far the best player on the day with his split defensive passes creating many problems for Kotoko defensive duo Kwabena Edusei and Rashid Sumaila especially in the first half.
Kotoko midfielder Michael Helegbe looked out of sort with many faulty passes that enraged their teeming supporters as he failed to make a telling contribution in the game.
Hearts lacked the cutting edge upfront and struggled to hold their verve in midfield as Kotoko took total control of the game in the second half.
For a moment, the Phobians midfield went to sleep as Kotoko dominated possession and kept them chasing shadows with Michael Akuffo, Issaka Yakubu andÂ substituteÂ Michael Anaba Â in the thick of affairs.
Hearts were reduced to ten-men after Alhassan Ali was shown the red card for a second bookable offence on Daniel Nii Adjei.
Substitue Daniel Nii Adjie should have scored in the 79thÂ minute after his sublime volley missed the post by inches.
On the flip side Kotoko striker Ben Acheampong was woeful upfront as his poor and untimely crosses left many of their supporters disappointed.
Hearts will be the happier of the two following their not-too impressive performances in the top-flight and newly appointed coach David Duncan will pat the players on the shoulders after they exhibited total commitment and determination to sniff a point off their bitter rivals at their own backyard.
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