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Sports News of Thursday, 14 March 2019

Source: Goal.com

Cut CK Akunnor some slack - JE Sarpong fires critics

Veteran Ghanaian coach Joseph 'JE' Sarpong has thrown his weight behind Asante Kotoko coach Charles 'CK' Akonnor who has come under fire following the club's disappointing draw with Al-Hilal Omdurman of Sudan in the Caf Confederation Cup group stage on Sunday.

Needing a win to confirm their place in the quarter-finals, the Porcupines were left disappointed after 90 minutes as they could only manage a draw in the home fixture at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in Kumasi.

By the current standings, Kotoko, currently third in Group C, must beat Zambia's Zesco United away in the final group game on Sunday to qualify.

"CK Akonnor has done extremely well because not all the coaches we have can coach Kotoko," Sarpong said on Happy FM.

"Look at where he took the team from - with no football activities in the country - and where they have reached.

"I honestly don’t understand those calling CK names just because they drew against Al-Hilal.

"Even if Kotoko get knocked out at this stage, the team and the coach must be praised because they have done well for themselves and the nation."

Akonnor took over the Kotoko job in October last year, signing a three-year deal to replace Samuel Paa Kwasi Fabin.

A month later, the former Dreams FC and Ashanti Gold boss entered in the Confederation Cup with the Porcupines, the side having last played a competitive game since June due to the suspension of all competitive local football following a bribery and corruption scandal involving the Ghana Football Association.