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GPL Matchday 11: Five Things to Expect

Matchday 10 produced a shocker of a result as Legon Cities rallied past AshGold who had the chance to go top of the table with a win.

What was probably the most surprising part of that result was, Legon Cities actually did manage to score five goals. This was a side struggling for goals at the beginning of the season.

So was that just a one-off thing or a sign of better times ahead for Bashir Hayford’s men? Here’s what to expect in matchday 11.

Hearts of Oak Prevalence

With Kotoko making Accra their home grounds for this season, the Premier League has maybe served too much of derbies in the city capital and with Hearts of Oak and Kotoko yet to face each other, it’s still yet to present a double dosage of the biggest of Accra derbies this season but history tells us, Hearts versus Olympics remains the biggest of derbies in Ghana’s top flight.

Despite the form of Olydade, the match-up promises to be a show.

Great Olympics in their last five games, have recorded just one win while scoring and conceding five. Compare that to their form of their five games before the last five, where they won 16 out of 25 points.

Meanwhile, it can be said Hearts of Oak, who have been impressive since Papic took over, are on a run. With 12 goals in their last five games which includes two draws and three wins that featured a 6-1 thumping of Bechem United, it looks like Olympics will be light work for the Phobians.

Golden Boot leaders pull clear

With eight goals each, Daniel Lomotey and Diawisie Taylor sit top of the Ghana Premier League goal king chart. Closely following them however, is Kotoko’s Kwame Opoku who has found the back of the net on six separate occasions this season.

WAFA, eighth on the table, have registered 15 goals this season with Lomotey having a hand in 53.33% of them and as WAFA come up against Liberty Professionals, a side that have already conceded 12 goals this season, the 5th most so far, Lomotey has the chance to pull clear ahead especially as WAFA play at home.

However, Taylor can still keep tabs with the striker as Karela face Medema who have conceded the 6th most goals this season, just behind WAFA’s weekend opponents, Liberty.

Smith Tactical switch

Last matchday, Kotoko suffered a disappointing loss to Aduana Stars by a lone goal.

The Porcupine Warrior’s Brazilian playmaker, Fabio Gama was taken off for Naby Keita and in his post-match interview, Johnson Smith explained his decision by saying Gama was being bullied by the Aduana defenders so he needed to get a second striker in support of Kwame Opoku whom he believes, Kotoko are over-relying on.

Aduana Stars coach, Paa Kwesi Fabin also conceded the reason his side managed to beat Kotoko was because they overcrowded the midfield where Kotoko normally play their football.

So, against AshGold, expect Smith to shake things up for Kotoko, especially after he indicated he’s feeling inclined to start pairing Opoku with a second striker.

Derby Party

Hearts of Oak versus Great Olympics is the main dish to a series of derbies scheduled to take place over the weekend.

Kotoko will travel to Obuasi where AshGold will host the porcupine warriors.

Back in Accra, Inter Allies and Legon Cities, still bubbling from that cracker of a game, will face off then, league leaders, Karela will welcome Medeama to the Crosby Awuah Memorial Park.

Four keenly contested derbies in one match day?? Football does not come any better than that. Get ready for some entertainment by reading the preview to the derbies here.

Trend of reds

The Ghana Premier League has surely been feisty this season, judging from the fact that, after match day 3, there’s been no game week without a player seeing red.

In total, there have been 13 red cards given out this season and we’re only now entering the 11th week and with four derbies to be contested this weekend, don’t expect a stall in that number.

Ashanti Gold against Kumasi Asante Kotoko, sounds like a fixture sure to single-handedly, take that red tally one notch-higher.

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