GPL: Five talking points from matchday 4

Patrick Razak missed a glorious opportunity in Hearts of Oak's draw against Karela

Despite the absence of Asante Kotoko and AshantiGold, the Ghana Premier League continued with some action in different venues.

Hearts of Oak were held to a disappointing goalless draw in Accra by Karela United. Legon Cities failed to get one past 10-man Dreams FC and WAFA became the first club to win an away match.

Here are our five talking points from matchday 4

Hearts of Oak record worst GPL start in three decades

Ahead of the campaign, there were a few red flags concerning the Phobians.

We can cast our minds back to the famous one week stint of Portuguese technical director Manuel Vaz Pinto and the COVID-19 concerns in the camp before their scheduled opener against Aduana Stars.

During the campaign, Frederick Moore resigned from his post as the CEO of the club, sparking notions of disarray at the management and boardroom level.

So far, the Accra-based side have failed to earn a win in three matches, equalling their worst start since 1986 where they also recorded two draws and one defeat.

The only positive is the appointment of head coach Kosta Papic who spearheaded the team's successful league title charge in the 2008/09 season.

Maybe, just maybe Papic can change things eventually but the signs are not good so far.

Legon Cities struggle to score goals

During the summer transfer window, Legon Cities got busy and snatched a few notable players.

The headline signing was that of Asamoah Gyan, a striker that tormented defences with the Black Stars and beyond.

Also, the Royals announced a loan deal for Matthew Anim Cudjoe, one of the most promising attackers in Ghana football today.

However, Legon Cities have found it difficult to put the ball into the net. They have netted just one goal so far this season and it came in their opening game against Berekum Chelsea via a penalty.

It means that the club has failed to find the net in their last three games, a worrying stat for recently appointed manager Bashir Hayford.

What is more worrying was the team's failure to break down Dreams FC who were down to 10 men for over 30 minutes on matchday four.

Granted, Asamoah Gyan has not featured regularly but for a side that aims to make a splash in the league over time, finding ways to score should be a priority.

Bashir Hayford was on the sidelines in Dawu

Bashir Hayford will definitely have some work to do ahead of the next set of games.

Karela maintain grip at top spot

At the start of the season, WAFA managed to beat other teams to the top of the table after clinching a 4-3 victory over King Faisal.

In the following week, Great Olympics took charge after recording a comprehensive 3-0 win over Legon Cities.

The league grew unpredictable after Karela United came back from behind to defeat Dreams 2-1 and take the top spot on matchday three.

Currently, Karela have maintained their place at the top despite drawing 0-0 with Hearts of Oak.

The Ayinase-based side is the first team to maintain top spot for more than one matchday this season. So far, they have amassed 8 points in four games (W2 D2) showing their determination to avoid defeat.

With the campaign slowing heating up, we should expect Karela United to challenge for a top-four spot and possibly win it all in the end.

WAFA record first away win

After three matchdays, there was a sense that grabbing three points away from home this season would be impossible.

Matchday one brought a barrage of draws (7 in 8 games) whilst matchdays two and three saw a rise in victories but none were recorded by an away side.

WAFA stepped up to the plate and successfully ended the streak after recording a 1-0 victory over Eleven Wonders.

Augustine Boakye scored the goal for the Academy boys in the 33rd minute. The visitors managed to hold on for the rest of the game and avoided the repeat of the Karela v Dreams game in the previous matchday.

The win will no doubt serve as a confidence booster for other away sides in subsequent games.

Schedule inconsistencies

In a year blighted by COVID-19 and other commitments, it was expected that some GPL matches will be affected as the season progresses.

It first happened on matchday one where the GFA cancelled the Aduana Stars v Hearts of Oak clash due to coronavirus concerns.

Gameweek two saw all 18 teams in action but CAF commitments and other factors meant that more games will be cancelled or postponed.

Asante Kotoko and AshantiGold had continental duties in the following matchday which forced their domestic matches to be postponed.

The same happened in the following week plus the subsequent postponement of the Accra Great Olympics v Ebusua Dwarfs game.

So far, the league has witness seven cancellations or postponement of matches. With 30 gameweeks left to play, we should expect more of the same.


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DISCLAIMER: The Views, Comments, Opinions, Contributions and Statements made by Readers and Contributors on this platform do not necessarily represent the views or policy of Multimedia Group Limited.