IT was refreshing that for once an Ashantigold-Asante Kotoko match at Len Clay did not record any nasty incident, but the day surely belonged to Kotoko’s safest pair of hands, Isaac Amoako.
After watching the heroics of Amoako at Len Clay last Sunday, and in many matches over the past two years, it surprised me that this fine goalkeeper has still not found a permanent place in the senior national team.
Keeping the post for Kotoko in the top league match at Obuasi, Amoako was in superb form, making an impressive contribution to the game which ended 1-1.
With commanding supremacy in the entire penalty area, matched by absolute confidence and reliability, Amoako’s stunning reflexes made him almost flawless in the match, and his 85th minute penalty save crowned an afternoon of brilliance.
The goal that beat the agile goalkeeper on the 15th minute could have beaten many a great goalkeeper.
From a very advantageous position, Ashantigold’s Mohammed Aminu unleashed a powerful shot, and the power behind it was too hot for Amoako to handle.
Matches between the two regional rivals have been characterized by tension and skirmishes, but the security arrangements and the comportment of the fans, ensured a clean game last Sunday.
Coach Paa Kwasi Fabin appeared not to have gotten his first team, but so far he has not performed badly.
The coach who had a successful stint with Kpando Heart of Lions joined Asante Kotoko at the beginning of the season, and he believes with time the team will get kicking.
At the opposite end, Coach David Duncan proved his ability to guide Ashantigold to a successful season after the team narrowly escaped relegation last season.
The Obuasi side showed great talent in the game, and but for wayward shooting by their strikers, and great goalkeeping by Amoako, they would have won the day.
It looks like both sides are in a sort of rebuilding and they can only get better as the season progresses.
Meanwhile, as the Glo Premier League receives a GH¢600,000 boost in TV rights from Optimum Media Prime (OMP), perennial underachievers, Liberty Professionals, will be called to duty tomorrow against much-hyped New Edubiase United in an outstanding Glo Premier League encounter at the Dansoman Carl Reindorf Park.
The game, originally scheduled for the opening day, had to be rescheduled by the Premier League Board (PLB) to enable Liberty Professionals to honour their WAFU Cup assignment with ASFA Yennega of Burkin Faso.
The duel promises to be thrilling following Liberty Professionals’ good form, vis-à-vis New Edubiase’s determination to make the most out of their maiden Premiership outing.
The Dansoman-based club is currently sixth with four points, as against their opponents’ three points in the 12th position.
Tomorrow’s game will give the other clubs a temporary breather ahead of Sunday’s fourth week pairings which will see league leaders, Ashantigold, storming the Ohene Djan Stadium in Accra as guests of bottom-placed Great Olympics.
In Kumasi, fifth-placed Asante Kotoko will be home to Arsenal in another tough battle, while struggling defending champions, Hearts, find themselves in another hot encounter against rejuvenated Hasaacas at Sekondi.
Fast-improving Kessben will welcome Eleven Wise to the Anane Boateng Stadium at Abrankese, All Stars will be trouble again at home against Liberty Professionals at Wa, Chelseas versus RTU at the Sunyani Coronation Park, with Aduana Stars facing Heart of Lions at Dormaa Ahenkro.
At the Obuasi Len Clay Stadium, New Eduabiase will play host to King Faisal in another exciting contest.