Soccer News of Wednesday, 11 June 2014
Chief Executive Officer of Winneba-based Division Two Cecil Hunters Football Club, Tanko Abu Seidu Barry, has jumped to the defence of Coach Mohammed Ahmed Polo, saying that his performance with Accra Hearts of Oak in the just-ended First Capital Plus Premier League deserves commendation rather than vilification.
He said Polo, against all odds, steered Hearts to finish third in the competitive league and nearly booked a CAF Champions League ticket for the Phobians but for a bad penalty call by referee S. B. Bortey against New Edubiase on the final day.
He recalled that when Polo took over from Coach David Duncan, Hearts were fourth on the league table, yet he was able to manage the team successfully in the midst of the ensuing crisis, and, therefore, deserved some praise.
“Polo has really gone through hell to get to where he is now. Nobody can deny the fact that there were factions in Hearts when he took over the team, and he had to work extra hard to silence his critics and detractors.
“The situation was so bad that at a point some supporters of the club even hooted at him during some matches at the Accra Stadium, but through perseverance, let’s all see where he has brought Hearts to,” he noted.
According to Tanko, placing Hearts in a respectable third position out of 16 clubs at the end of the 2013/14 season with a CAF Confederation Cup qualification cannot be described as a bad performance, considering the odds.
“Many coaches would have crumbled under such sustained pressure from the fans but the man stood his grounds to achieve this feat.
“Polo deserves some plaudits from the rank and file of the Phobian family and all Ghanaian football fans for that achievement,” he stressed.