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Thursday, December 7, 2023

Ghana FA Cup: Hearts and Kotoko advance without issue, crowd trouble following Medeama’s victory sees Karela United home stadium banned

The Round of 32 in the Ghanaian FA Cup took place over the weekend and there was little trouble for top clubs Asante Kotoko and Hearts of Oak during their encounters against lower tier sides. Kotoko took down third-tier side Thunderbolt FC by a 1-3 score, with four minutes not even having passed before Evans Adomako rose up to score from a cross, the ball bouncing off his shoulder and over the keeper.

Thunderbolt provided some resistance by quickly gaining an equalizer soon after from a set piece, but the Porcupine Warriors took over the match after the break with the score tied. In the 49th minute Fabio Gama fed Samuel Frimpong with a wonderful weighted ball and the right sided player crossed back for Adomako to tally his second. Another cross, this time from the left flank, broke down the Thunderbolt defense once again as Emmanuel Gyamfi had an easy finish from close range to wrap up the proceedings.

At the Accra Sports Stadium, Hearts of Oak were only prevented from scoring early by some desperate defending from Division Two side Windy Professionals and it seemed inevitable that the goals would start accumulating. It took longer than Phobians fans would have liked, but after halftime the opener came when Kojo Obeng Junior crossed in for Daniel Afriyie, whose deflected shot beat the Windy Professionals keeper. Emmanuel Nettey found the second when the lower tier team’s defense failed in an offside trap, with Afriyie getting behind to tap over to Nettey for an easy finish. Benjamin Afutu and Manaf Umar wrapped up the scoring for Hearts in a 4-1 victory.

Rivals Medeama SC and Karela United met with Medeama coming out on top, but the events after the match drew the most headlines. Karela fans attacked the Medeama team bus following the match, breaking a window and leaving Medeama midfielder Eric Kwakwa in stitches as a result. The Ghana Football Association came down with a swift punishment for Karela by banning the team’s home venue indefinitely.

Highlights from Hearts and Kotoko’s victories are below.

Hearts of Oak 4-1 Windy Professionals

Thunderbolt FC 1-3 Asante Kotoko