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League Report of Thursday, 21 February 2008

Source: 90 Minutes Newspaper

GT Onetouch Premiership preview

THE Onetouch Premiership bounces back from recess after a four week break due to the Ghana 2008 tournament which ended some two Sundays ago. The rivalry is due to be rekindled as we witness eight league matches at eight centres stretching form the new Tamale Sports Stadium to the Ohene Djan Stadium in Accra. The string of poor performances from the Phobians has made their fans to scratch their heads for answers and it was made worse over the weekend in the MTN/CAF Champions League when they succumbed to a 3-0 defeat at the hands of FC 105 of Gabon in Libreville.

Even some die hard Phobians are beginning to question whether their idol club has what it takes to mount a serious challenge for the Premiership diadem. They might want to find answers as they trek to Tamale to engage “Pride of the North”, Real Tamale United in the match of the week. Matches between both sides always produces a lot of fireworks and it's left to be seen whether the Tamale lads will add to the woes of the Phobians or it will be the same old story for Hearts. A draw is a sure bet. Ashgold return home after starting their African campaign on a low note to face yet another dicey encounter against Gamba All Blacks at the Len Clay Stadium. Coach David Duncan will hope to lead his charges to make amends and beat the Swedru lads before hitting the African trail again to welcome their Nigerien counterparts. With Fatau Dauda, Alex Asamoah and Alhaji Saani in control of affairs, the three points will surely remain at Obuasi even though All Blacks won't be mere pushovers.

Current league leaders Kumasi Asante Kotoko hope to continue their fantastic form at the Baba Yara Stadium where they lock horns with Tema Youth. The Tema lads have always been a torn in the flesh of the Porcupine Warriors and with Coach “Opeele” Boateng now at the helm and plotting his strategic warfare from the touchline, expect tradition to continue. Even though the Kotoko fans seem not to be so enthused with management for selling Adamu Mohammed to Turkey for a reported fee of around $300,000 they will nonetheless rally behind the team for victory even though an upset cannot be ruled out. Coach De Graft of Accra Great Olympics has a lot of work to do if the wonder club is to rediscover their magic wand as their current position doesn't befit a team of their status. They have been struggling from the beginning of the season and only a string of victories can save them from the relegation net. At the Ohene Djan Stadium this Sunday, they will have to play above themselves to beat Sekondi Hasaacas who are also not in the best of forms in a cagey encounter which can go either way.

Another action spot will be at the El Wak Stadium where Zaytuna FC clash with Kessben FC. Both sides lost vital members of their technical set-up before and during the break as “Opeele” Boateng left Kessben FC whilst celebrated coach Ibrahim Sunday became a casualty at Zaytuna. It's left to be seen whether it will have any bearing on their performances as they look set to split the points. Free scoring Heart of Lions who are breathing down heavily on the neck of the Porcupine Warriors are away to Berekum Arsenals at the Berekum Golden City Park in a match they will have to win to keep the momentum even though they will be lucky to come away with even a point. In other matches, Real Sportive stays at the Tema Park to engage Alhaji Karim Grunsah's King Faisal whilst Liberty Professionals travel to Wa to face Wa All Stars to conclude the eleventh week's fixtures.