By Ameenu Shardow
Asante Kotoko shut the mouths of their rivals Hearts of Oak with a 3-1 win at the Accra Sports Stadium in the maiden MTN Super 2 Charity match.Â
Read the full text commentary below.....................
Welcome to GHANAsoccernet.com's live text update of this all important pre-season friendly between giants Hearts of Oak and Asante Kotoko.
This is the second leg of the innovative fixture being played at the Accra Sports Stadium. Both teams go into today's game pegged at 1-1 from their first encounter in Kumasi a week ago.
Weather conditions here is very good for fine football this afternoon withÂ temperaturesÂ hovering around 27 degrees celcuis.
Kotoko:Â Abdulai Soulama-Augustine Okrah, Baba Rahman, Mohammed Awal, Ohene Brenya-Michael Akuffo, Frank Boateng, Yaw Frimpong, Nathaniel Asamoah, Kofi Nti Boakye-Ahmed Toure, Nathaniel Asamoah.
Subs: Amos Frimpong, Eric Donkor, Albert Bruce, Michael Anaba, Michael MensahDavid Offei, Fatawu, Richard Yeboah, Felix Annan.
Hearts:Â Laud Quartey- Yussif Faisal, Saeed Mohamed, Omar Toufi, Uriah Asante,Â Soulama Ahmed, Kofi Agyare, Abubakar Moro, Prince Gyimah, Douglas Nkrumah, Mahatma
Subs: Enzemaba Samuel, Abdul Ganiyu, Owusu Seaf, Ansah Boboie, Thomas Abbey, Raymond Darkey, Josepg Tagoe, Isaac Ofori, Sammy Adjei.
There has been a delay in kickoff which was originally fixed for 15:00 GMT.
We are being told kickoff time has now been shifted to 15:30GMT.
The technical team and substitutes of Kotoko have emerged from the tunnel as the few Hearts supporters gathered on my right sing their voices out loud.
Ball boys lead out both teams onto the pitch as the few fans herald their arrival, we are getting closer and closer to the big kickoff.
Hearts of Oak sporting a green jersey with the rainbow colours conspicuously displayed in the middle over white shorts. Their visitors (Kotoko) in all white today just like in the first leg.
Both teams gather at the center of the pitch for their pre-match prayers.
1â€™ Kotoko kicks us off defending the Independence square end of the pitch while Hearts do same at the Conference Center end.
2â€™ Already Hearts jumps into attack with a glorious chance for Mahatma Otoo but shoots wide. That should have been 1-0.
3â€™ Both teams trying to put the ball on the turf with Hearts enjoying the early possession.
4â€™ Free kick to Hearts just on the edge of Kotokoâ€™s penalty box to be effected by captain Douglas Nkrumah who shoots straight into the side net.
5â€™Neat ball threaded through for Ahmed Toure to chase but Laud Quartey rushed on to clear the danger.
6â€™ Referee awards another free kick to Hearts from 30 yards out of the Kotoko post but Mahatma Otoo shoots straight into the wall.
7â€™ Michael Akuffo moans on the turf, not sure what happened to him but he is up now.
12â€™ Nathaniel Asamoahâ€™s cross met by Ahmed Toure but is wide, welcome goal kick to Hearts.
13â€™ Kotoko wins a free-kick of their own on the edge of Heartsâ€™ penalty box but totally wasted by Augustine Okrah.
14â€™ Hearts begins a fresh attack from the back with Kofi Agyare.
16â€™ Ball lofted in behind Heartsâ€™ defense but Toure and Asamoah both caught offside.
18â€™ Great skill by Baba Rahman but intended pass intercepted by Kofi Agyare, Maxwell Konadu up on his feet.
19â€™ Match stale at this point with none of the teams wanting to take the initiative. Very disappointing considering the bright start made especially by Hearts.
21â€™ Kotoko earn the gameâ€™s first corner to be taken by Augustine Okrah but Heartsâ€™s defense stood resolute and clears to touch. Throw-in Kotoko.
23â€™ Hearts controls the ball in midfield but referees stops play. Akuffo lay on the pitch as referee calls out for a stretcher. The Hearts fans are least amused, they felt there was an advantage brewing and honestly I side with them.
24â€™ Beautiful ball control by Brenya which draws applause from fans.
27â€™ Yet another Kotoko player is on the deck, now it Ahmed Toure. He limps off the pitch, perhaps was not full fit to start this game.
29â€™ Free Kick for Hearts, completely wasted by Asante, I donâ€™t know why he chose to shoot on goal from that distance out.
31â€™ Temporal hold up as Ohene Brenya receives treatment after colliding with his own player in their attempt to clear their lines.
33â€™ Play resumes with Kotoko and they immediately switch into attack, ball with Nathaniel Asamoah who beats the goalkeeper, a chance! Squares for Nti-Boakye who coolly slots home. Goooooooooooal!!!
34â€™ First yellow card to Heartsâ€™ Saeed Mohammed after going in with his boot for an arial ball. Kotoko looks settled now after jumping into the lead.
36â€™ Kotoko supporters having a blast as Awal Mohammed goes off the pitch to receive treatment.
37â€™ Hearts beginning to mount pressure but keeper Soulama jumps in to grab an intended cross for Otoo, he remains on the pitch in some distress.
39â€™ Augustine Okrah is taken off for Fatawu Mohammed, not quite sure why but my immediate suspicion would be through injury, he has been one of the few bright spots in the game.
40â€™ Play resumes as Hearts win a corner, a free header but feeble attempt in the end. Soulama calmly gathers.
42â€™ Penalty shout, but wave off, Hearts corner. Totally wasted by Douglas Nkrumah.
43â€™ Games goes back to sleep, turning a bit rough at this point.
44â€™ Another Kotoko player hits the turf, its Frank Boateng again not sure what happened to him.
45â€™ Nathaniel Asamoah turns his man inside and shoots with his weaker lefty foot. Calmly gathered by Laud Quartey. We will do three minutes of added time.
45+1â€™ Heartsâ€™ anxious to pull level and this is forcing very silly mistakes to the disgust of their home crowd.
45+2â€™ Kotoko taking all the time to effect this throw-in as referee takes a look at his watch.
45+3â€™ Referee ends it all in the first half. Kotoko enter the dressing room the much happier side after going ahead in the 33rd minute through striker Kofi Nti Boakye.
New signing Kofi Nti Boakye turned home the opener inside the box on 33 minutes after he was teed -up by Nathaniel Asamoah.
Welcome back to the second half where already Hearts have effected a change.
Moro Toufic is taken off for Bobie Ansah
45â€™ Play restarts with Hearts but Kotoko making the early incursions.
48â€™ Hearts playing around the Kotoko danger area, canâ€™t pick out the decisive pass.
49â€™ Ahmed Soulama with a glorious chance for Hearts but blasts wide.
50â€™ Delightful cross sent into the Kotoko area but Yaw Frimpong puts it over. Hearts corner.
52â€™ Hearts gradually taking the game to their opponents but the Kotoko defense wonâ€™t budge.
54â€™Otoo comes in deep to pick the ball passes through, Awal fouls Asante in the penalty box, referee gives it.
55â€™ Awal gets a yellow for his troubles and has once again presented Hearts a golden opportunity to score. Nkrumah neatly disposes off the kick. Goooooooooooooooooalllll!!!!!!
57â€™ A lot of activity on the Kotoko bench, it appears Konadu wants to make another change as Hearts go in search of the lead.
58â€™ Albert Bruce comes on for Frank Boateng. A good substitution in my opinion.
59â€™ Michael Mensah comes on for Kotoko goalscorer Kofi Nti-Boakye.
60â€™Temporal hold up as Kotokoâ€™s goalkeeper Soulama Abdullai receives treatment on the pitch. The Hearts fans have all of the sudden found their voices again.
61â€™ Soulama can no longer continue as he is substituted by Felix Annan. Play resumes.
64â€™ Kotoko trying to regain control of the game.
65â€™ Midfield battle as Nkrumah goes in with a bad tackle and rightfully gets booked.
66' DefensiveÂ mishapÂ in the Hearts area, Tour capitalizes by heading home a Nathaniel Asamoah cross.Goooalllllll!!!!!!!!!
67â€™ Albert Bruce gets booked for an unnecessary challenge on Moro Abubakar.
70â€™ Two Kotoko players now groan on the turf, both receiving medical attention. It is Toure and Yaw Frtimpong.
72â€™ Hearts gets a free kick near Kotokoâ€™s penalty area to be taken by Douglas Nkrumah.
73' Keeper parries away and Kotoko break on the counter, what a sweet counter, ball played into the path of Nathaniel Asamoah who is now one-on-one with Quartey and coolly slots in between his legs. Goooooaaaal!!!!!!!!!!
75â€™ Saeed Mohammed taken off for the diminutive Joseph Tagoe.
77â€™ Another change for Hearts, Raymond Darkeh comes in for Atakora Gyimah.
79â€™ Another Kotoko player for the umpteenth time is on the deck.
80â€™ Kotoko makes another change; Amos Frimpong comes on for Yaw Frimpong.
82â€™ Bobie Ansah is the latest to enter the book for a late tackle on Nathaniel Asamoah. Hearts beginning to get frustrated.
83â€™ Kotoko beginning to turn on the style, Fatawu put through but flagged offside.
85â€™ Yellow card to Fatwu as Hearts surge forward for a consolation.
87â€™ Hearts keep pushing but the Kotoko defense keeps repelling, now the substitute goalkeeper is getting into the act.
88â€™ Ahmed Toure gets a standing ovation from the Kotoko fans as Michael Anaba takes his place.
89â€™ A chance to put more gloss on the win for Kotoko but Asamoahâ€™s header was feeble. Meanwhile we will be doing four minutes of added time.
90â€™ With the game almost won, the visitors are beginning to rub it in with exquisite skills.
90+2â€™ Ball played back in but too high for a header, chance spurned by Hearts.
90+3â€™ Referee ends it all with one minute of added time still left to play but no one will complain considering the scoreline.
The Kotoko players go to jubilate with their fans, they have comprehensiely beaten arch rivals Hearts of Oak by 3-1.
Thank you for joining us for this live update, see you soon.