League Report of Sunday, 16 March 2008
Kumasi, March 16, GNA - League leaders Kumasi Asante Kotoko scored a goal in each half to beat Real Tamale United (RTU) 2-0 in their Onetouch Premier League match to draw the curtain down on the first round at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in Kumasi on Sunday. Jordan Opoku scored the first for his side in the 39th minute after skipper Osei Kuffour had returned a ball from the corner line with prolific goal poacher, Eric Bekoe making it 2-0 for Kotoko in the 48th minute.
It was the 'Porcupine Warriors' who went into action after Accra-based referee, Ebenezer Ferguson had whistled for hostilities to begin and nearly took the lead in the first minute in a two-man move between Osei Kuffour and Bekoe, but the defence of RTU managed to weather the storm.
Kotoko who had recorded two successive away drawn games against Accra Hearts of Oak and Berekum Arsenals and therefore needed a win to maintain their lead, probed for the opener but a chance that came their way the eighth minute was wasted by Afful Harrison when he shot into the waiting hands of Charles Kipo in posts for RTU. With RTU sensing danger they tightened their defence and also gradually started making some incursions into the Kotoko goal area and had a chance in the 22nd minute to cause havoc but Kabiru Imoro squandered the chance. RTU however continued to pile pressure on Kotoko and nearly took the lead in the 25th minute but goalkeeper Souleyman Abdoulaye came out bravely to save the situation. Left off the hook, Kotoko had the opener in the 39th minute through Jordan Opoku in a goalmouth melee with a powerful right footer to beat goalkeeper Kipo. On resumption of the second half, Kotoko improved on their game and went ahead to score the second goal in the 48th minute through Eric Bekoe when he outwitted a policed defender, Alhassan Hamdu to shoot to the blind side of the keeper. Both teams exhausted their substitutions but while Kotoko piled pressure to increase their goal tally, RTU on the other hand made efforts to find a consolation goal. With an earlier heavy downpour, ball control became difficult as the two teams tried their best but the score line remained the same till the final whistle.