Hearts

Kwadwo Obeng Junior was the hero of the day after his 47th minute strike counted all three points for Hearts of Oak in their opening game of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) Normalisation Special Cup with Dreams FC at the Accra Sports Stadium on Sunday.

Both sides started the game looking a bit jittery, perhaps form the lack of competitive games.

After so many basic playing errors in the early minutes of the match, the players began to warm themselves into the game to give the fans something to enjoy finally.

It was the home side who showed they wanted something for their fans as a long drive effort from midfielder Aminu Alhassan in the ninth minute gave glimpses of what they had to offer.

The visiting side replied four minutes after, with striker Richard Addai’s close range header from a corner kick missing the target.

Hearts then took the game to their opponents and continued to knock at goal. In the 24th minute, goal poacher Joseph Esso’s connection from a Christopher Bonney’s corner kick struck the inner part of the crossbar.

The well-structured man in post for the Phobians, Richmond Ayi was forced to make a low diving save from a dangerous carpet cross from Abdulai Ibrahim.

Kim Grant’s men reacted with a swift break which looked to be clearest open chance on the day but skipper Fatawu Mohammed shot wide in the penalty area.

Chances kept falling for the home side like manna, but the profligacy of their attack couldn’t put them ahead. Defender Mohammed Alhassan after a surging run was able to force another good save from Dreams’ experienced goalie Isaac Amoako in the 37 minute.

Kim Grnat made a quick substitution after recess, bringing Benjamin Afutu on for Malik Akowuah. It did not take long before the substitution paid off.

Afutu set Obeng Kwadjo Junior on goal in the 47th minute, which was beautifully converted by the attacker.

Obeng Junior again maneuvered his way through the Dreams FC defence in a solo attempt minutes after his opener but his final effort was too weak to beat Amoako in post.

With the home fans relentelss support for their team, Hearts kept pressing in search of the second but substitute Afutu and striker Kofi Kordzi all missed clear cut chances in separate attempts.

The closest Dreams came in an equalizing effort was a 76th minute miss from the boots of Ayi who missed from a yawning net.

It might not have been the flamboyant performance the home fans would have wished for but the win is definitely a good wat to start.

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