Accra Hearts of Oak bounced back to winning ways after beating AshantiGold 2-1 in a match-week 21 encounter of the 2021/22 Ghana Premier League (GPL) played at the Accra Sports Stadium on Sunday.
Daniel Afriyie Barnieh scored twice as the Phobians secured all three points to propel Hearts into the sixth position with 32 points, while AshantiGold dropped into the 13th position on the league table.
Hearts were the dominant side at the start of the game with chances falling for Sulley Muntari and Daniel Afriyie Barnieh, but their efforts were not on target.
Hearts were awarded a penalty in the 12th minute by Referee George Mawuli after Isaac Mensah was fouled by AshantiGold defender Frank Akoto.
Afriyie Barnieh stepped up and struck the Phobians in front from 12 yards.
AshantiGold were very sleek with their passing and deservedly restored parity through Adams Aminu, who headed home from close after some good work on the flanks by Yaw Annor.
It was a highly enthralling encounter with half an hour gone and Hearts striker Kwadwo Obeng Junior nearly restored his side’s lead but his header was saved by goalkeeper Dennis Votere.
Goalkeeper Votere produced a point-blank save to deny Obeng Junior a few minutes later, but Dennis Korsah couldn’t capitalize on the rebound having skied his effort.
AshantiGold playmaker Seth Osei nearly put his side in front of the counter-attack, but couldn’t guide his shot on target as his shot went wide.
AshantiGold ended the first half very strong but couldn’t add to their tally as the game went to recess one apiece.
The Miners started the second half on the front foot displaying some good football with Seth Osei and Eric Esso in the thick of the action.
AshantiGold had a penalty shout waved by Referee George Mawuli after Yaw Annor ferocious strike struck the arm of Mohammed Alhassan in the 50th minute.
The rampancy of the away side forced Coach Samuel Boadu into making a double substitution with Kofi Kordzi and Patrick Razak coming in for Obeng Junior and Isaac Mensah.
Hearts’ striker Barnieh scored his second goal of the game in the 61st minute after he powered in a ferocious strike past goalkeeper Dennis Votere.
Yaw Annor’s pace was causing problems for the Hearts defence and he nearly pulled parity for the away side with a quarter of the game left, but Hearts goalkeeper Richmond Ayi pulled off a good save.
Hearts nearly threw away their lead in the 78th minute after some shambolic defending but Yaw Annor couldn’t capitalize.
Hearts were largely on the back foot in the last 10 minutes of the game with the away side mounting pressure, but the Phobians held on to secure all three points.