Asante Kotoko earned their first competitive victory under new manager Seydou Zerbo on Wednesday over newly promoted side Nsoatreman FC, winning 2-1 before the Ghana Premier League was put on hold on Thursday by the Ghana Football Association due to a legal injunction filed against the league. Stephen Amankomah converted from the penalty spot and Isaac Oppong scored Kotoko’s second before the Porcupines held out for the full three points.
Kotoko controlled the play throughout the first half and early part of the second half on a rain-soaked pitch at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi. Shortly after important center back Mubarak Yussif was forced off due to injury, the hosts struck when a clumsy challenge in the Nsoatreman penalty area led to penalty kick for Amankomah who rolled his effort past Yaw Owusu Ansah in goal.
Oppong doubled the lead shortly after halftime with a calm left-footed finish past Ansah after being set up by striker Steven Mukwala. Kotoko needed the extra cushion when Nsoatreman’s Philip Ofori cut the lead in half with a flicked header that snuck by goalkeeper Ibrahim Danlad. However the defending champions held on without too much further trouble from the top division newcomers.
On Thursday the Ghana Football Association announced that the GPL is on hold for now after former top division club Ashanti Gold SC filed a court injunction at the Human Rights High Court. The GFA specified that no fixtures will be played until a decision is reached by the court on October 14. Ashanti Gold were relegated from the GPL to the third tier Division Two at the end of last season due to match-fixing and their decision to take the matter to court is creating plenty of uncertainty about when the 2022-23 season will continue. Joy FM has more on the ramifications of the legal battle in one of the links below.
Highlights from the Kotoko victory are further below.