The Ghana premier league bounced back after a fortnight break. Major changes at the top of the pile characterized the return of the league with Aduana Stars being the biggest movers.
The second half of the season got underway on Saturday with two intriguing fixtures. Great Olympics continued from where they left off in the first round with a 1-0 victory over Berekum Chelsea. Coffie Bekoe’s goal ensured that Olympics continued their fine form which has lifted them up to 11th on the log.
The return leg of the erstwhile top liner in zone 2 of the Ghanaian second tier and the now central regional derby between Ebusua Dwarfs and Elmina Sharks saw Dwarfs calling the bluff of their sworn rivals in a 3-1 triumph. Goals from Isaac Kwanin, Osman Mohammed, Nicholas Gyan and a consolation by Benjamin Boateng for Sharks gave Dwarfs the revenge they so much wanted.
Ashanti Gold SC secured a valuable point in Wa as they held champions All Stars in a 1 all encounter. David Abagna rescued the champions as his goal cancelled out Mumuni Shafiu’s opener.
Aduana Stars moved top of log after an emphatic 3-0 win over Bechem United at home. A Sam Adams opener and a Nathaniel Asamoah double downed Bechem United in a one sided game.
Medeama SC trounced Bolga All Stars by 5 goals to 1 to complete the double over the struggling new entrants. Striker Bernard Ofori bagged a hattrick to cap off his brilliant show on the day. Meshack Odoom and Latif Salifu were the other scorers with Mohammed Naeem getting the face saving goal for All Stars.
Asante Kotoko ended their 8 game winless streak with a solitary goal victory over Tema Youth at the Tema park. Baba Mahama struck midway into the second half to sink the home side.
Inter Allies held on to Martin Antwi’s second half goal to pip West Africa Football Academy in their game at the El-Wak. WAFA by this result slips to second behind title favourites Aduana Stars.
Hearts of Oak’s quest to do the double over Liberty Professionals failed to materialize as they were held at home. Liberty Professionals drew first blood just after recess through Benjamin Tweneboah but Vincent Atingah pulled parity for Hearts through the spot.
ADUANA BACK FOR THEIR TITLE?
Touted overwhelming favourites in the lead up to the start of the season, Aduana Stars blistering start to the campaign was only a confirmation of what pundits had anticipated. Having amassed 13 out of a possible 15 in their first 5 games they looked unplayable until a goalless draw with Medeama at their own backyard marked the beginning of a brief slump which spanned three games without a win. Ebusua Dwarfs proved to the Ghanaian football fraternity that Aduana were not invincible after all coming from behind to beat them fair and square.
West Africa Football Academy conjured a seven game winning streak along the line to usurp Aduana Stars as league leaders. This impressive run remains the longest any club has attained thus far in the Ghanaian top flight. WAFA’s winning run was thwarted by Hearts of Oak but the Sogakope based team roared back and finished the first half of the season top of the pile.
The start of the second round has however seen heads roll at the top half of the log. West Africa Football Academy started the second round on the wrong foot with a defeat to Inter Allies. This has seen them slip behind Aduana Stars who were comfortable victors at the start of round 2. Aduana Stars boast of an impeccable record of not conceding a single goal at home this season coupled with some ruthless championship displays away from home.
Having ascended the top of the pile after match day 1 in the second round have the overwhelming preseason title favourites stolen the show on the other title contenders already?
The verdict could easily be pronounced in the favour of the Dormaa based club bearing in mind their consistency and the quality of the personnel at their disposal. However the proverbial unpredictability of the game of football has taught us all the lessons there is to learn in terms of uncertainties. That said, it’s quite evident that Aduana Stars have seized the initiative and are possibly back for “their” title.
By: Kwame Owusu Ansah