Oly, Hearts clash in ‘Ga Mashie’ derby
The much-heralded cracker, dubbed the ‘Ga Mashie derby’ between Hearts of Oak and Great Olympics will be waged this evening (kick off 6pm) at the Accra Sports Stadium.
It was a jamboree for Hearts last year when the two teams clashed with the Phobians running away with a 4-0 thumping of their sworn rivals in the truncated season.
Benjamin Afutu’s double, Daniel Barnieh and Joseph Esso’s efforts were enough for the Phobians to grab the bragging rights; a result Hearts will be eager to play against a very solid Olympics side.
New Oly gaffer Yaw Preko will be in search of his second win since he took over from Annor Walker as he seeks to halt the Phobians. With both sides recording a point each from their last encounter, a win for Hearts could secure the first position, while victory for the ‘Dade’ boys assures them of a second position on the log.
With no news concerning injuries, the individual brilliance of Oly’s skipper Gladson Awako could come to play while youngster Hearts’ Manaf Umar would hope to pull the strings for Coach Kosta Papic.
The tricky moments continue tomorrow where Asante Kotoko travel to lock horns with Ashantigold SC in the ‘Ashanti derby’ at the Obuasi Len Clay Stadium on a Sunday afternoon. The last meeting between both sides ended in a 0-0 stalemate at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in Kumasi. This time around, the Porcupine Warriors will make a two-hour trip to the mining town to face Ashgold in a very cagey game. Both teams picked up defeats in their previous game and will be hoping to make amends.
Kotoko will be elated with the comeback of Mudashiru Salifu in midfield and forward Osman Ibrahim could make a return to the team as interim coach Johnson Smith is positive ahead of their clash.
Top scorer Hans Kwofie, who missed out in their defeat to Legon Cities last weekend, will be available for the Miners. A win for any side could push them to top spot as they both boast of 16 points each.
In other fixtures, languishing King Faisal will host Berekum City at the Ohene Ameyaw today at 3pm.
It will be a battle of survival tomorrow at the Accra Sports Stadium when Inter Allies square off with Legon Cities, while WAFA welcome struggling Liberty Professionals to the Sogakope Red Bull Arena with Dreams FC traveling to face Elmina Sharks at the Nduom Park at 3pm.
Table-toppers Karela United will host Medeama SC at the Anyinase Park at 3pm with Aduana Stars hosting Ebusua Dwarfs at the Agyeman Badu I Park in Dormaa.
As of press time, title favourites Bechem United were squaring off with Eleven Wonders at the Bechem park.
BY LINUS SIAW NARTEY