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2016/17 GHPL survival dogfight goes down to the wire – who needs what [PERMUTATIONS]

Tema Youth will pray feverishly for victory at the dreaded Golden City Park against Berekum Chelsea

With the title race already decided in the penultimate fixtures where Aduana Stars defeated Elmina Sharks to become champions for a second time, the 2016/17 Ghana Premier League is set to end in one of the most intriguing fashions this Sunday.

Bottom-placed Bolga All Stars more or less are awaiting two more teams to fail the relegation dogfight so they together go down to compete in the second tier during the 2017/18 season.

With the focus now on the relegation battle, all teams at the bottom half of the log are not safe. Three points separate the 8th-placed team from the 15th.

Fentuo Tahiru analyses the quite complicated survival race:

Which clubs could go down?

First, this is how the league table looks ahead of matchday 30:

 

Bottom nine – Take out Bolga All Stars who long-booked their ticket to the Division One. From Berekum Chelsea down to the last but one Accra Great Olympics, as many as half the Premier League teams risk relegation on the final day.

Great Olympics

League Position – 15th

Points – 36

Match Bechem United vs Great Olympics (Nana Fosu Gyeabour Park, Bechem)

Player/coach Godwin Attram will have to dig deep to save the Wonder Club

How can they survive?

Great Olympics face the most daunting task to survive. They will need to beat Bechem United away from home to take them to 39 points. As things stand, 6 clubs –Berekum Chelsea, Elmina Sharks, Bechem United, Liberty Professionals, Ashantigold, and Tema Youth have 39 points or less, the maximum attainable for Olympics with a win. With that in mind, IF…

  • Olympics win and ANY ONE of the rest lose, Olympics stay up.
  • Olympics lose, they’re going down irrespective of other results
  • Draw, they’re going down irrespective of other results
  • Olympics win and any one of Liberty, Ashgold get a draw, Olympics will go down. But they could still survive IF Chelsea and Sharks because both clubs would still have 39 points– same number of points as Olympics with a win. It will then come down to head to head and Olympics have a better head to head over both teams and will stay up as a result.

 

Tema Youth

 League position – 14th

Points – 37

Match: Berekum Chelsea vs Tema Youth (Golden City Park, Berekum)

 How can they survive?

Tema Youth have their work cut out for them. A win will take them to 40 points, the magic number for survival this campaign. However, a draw will take them to 38 points and could work miracles if other results go their way. As it stands, 3 other clubs (Chelsea, Ashgold, Liberty) have 38 points and Olympics have 36. So IF….

  • Tema Youth win, and all the rest lose, they stay up.
  • Tema Youth lose, they’re going down no matter the other results
  • Tema Youth draw, they will have to hope all the clubs with 38 points lose. After which it will come down to head to head. And even with that, all three clubs on 38 points have a better H2H than Tema Youth and will rank ahead of the Tema boys.

 

Ashantigold

Position – 13th

Points – 38

Match – Ashantigold vs Aduana Stars (Len Clay Stadium, Obuasi)

The Miners know they must ‘bring down’ Aduana Stars from the skies

Ashantigold’s fight for survival took a massive jolt last weekend when they lost to fellow relegation contenders Great Olympics in Accra. And they have it all to do now as they host newly crowned Champions Aduana Stars. So what are the conditions of the survival? IF…

  • Ashantigold win, they stay. Straightforward.
  • Ashgold draw, and any two of the other 8 teams fail to win, Ashgold stay up.
  • Ashgold lose, they can still stay up if Tema Youth and Olympics both lose. But they will go down if both of those clubs win. If one of those clubs win and Ashgold lose, then the miners could go down.

 

 Liberty Professionals

Position – 12th

Points – 38

Match  – Liberty Professionals vs Asante Kotoko (Carl Reindolf Park, Dansoman)

 Michael Osei’s Liberty Professionals host his former side Kumasi Asante Kotoko hoping to inflict defeat on them while giving himself joy in the process. It’s a paradoxical game of football that Osei will so badly want to win because that will be a sure route to staying in the top flight.

IF…..

  • Liberty professionals win, they stay up.
  • They lose, they could still stay up if any 2 of Ashantigold, Tema Youth and Olympics lose. But they will go down if any 2 of those teams get wins.
  • Liberty lose and any 2 of those teams draw, they will survive.
  • Liberty draw, they will survive if any 2 of the teams on 38 points and below fail to get wins.

 

Bechem United

Position – 11th

Points – 38

Match – Bechem United vs Great Olympics (Nana Fosu Gyeabour Park, Bechem)

 Solomon Odwo, Bechem United’s coach said two weeks ago that his club was not involved in the relegation dog fight and that he was only concerned with what position the hunters would finish at the end of the season – that was before they lost to Tema Youth last week. Bechem are not safe. To say their game against Olympics is just a football game would be an understatement. It is war, and the winner takes all. Bechem can survive IF…

  • They win, they stay. No calculations need.
  • They lose, they can still survive if any 2 of the teams placed below them lose. But if they lose and two of the teams below them (not including Olympics who they’re playing against) win, they will go down.
  • They draw, they would survive if any 1 of 3 different teams below them drop points. But if all the teams below them win, there’s a very slim chance they could go down.

 

Elmina Sharks

Position – 10th

Points – 39

Match: Elmina Sharks vs Wa All Stars

 Elmina Sharks are one of 3 clubs on 39 points and have a brighter chance of staying afloat. Yaw Acheampong has masterminded a great run of form put them on a fine road to finishing in a respectable position. However, 2 losses on the bounce which included a 0-1 home loss to Olympics have dragged them into the relegation mud fight, albeit as peripheral participants. But their position is not 100% confirmed and a combination of results could still see them make an unlikely drop. IF….

  • Sharks win, they stay up
  • Sharks draw, they stay up
  • Sharks lose; the only way they would be relegated is if Olympics, Tema Youth, Ashantigold, and Liberty Professionals win. In that case, Sharks would be relegated along with Bechem United.

 

Berekum Chelsea

Position – 9th

Points – 39

Match: Berekum Chelsea vs Tema Youth (Golden City Park, Berekum)

Berekum Chelsea are one of the unlikeliest teams to go down on Sunday. A win or draw at home would guarantee their stay in the top flight.

If they lose however, here’s what the permutations look like for them:

  • Great Olympics and every other team below them will have to win before they can be relegated. Any result either than this and Chelsea would stay. 

 

Inter Allies

Position – 8th

Points – 39

Match: Hearts of Oak vs Inter Allies (Accra Sports Stadium)

Their opening day clash at El Wak was lit despite the early downpour

Inter Allies gave their survival hopes a big lift when they beat Liberty Professionals last weekend. The ‘Eleven is to One’ will survive if they win or draw against Hearts of Oak. In fact, they have a very good chance of staying up if even if they lose, unless the following highly unlikely scenarios play out:

  • If Allies lose and Tema Youth, Ashantigold, Liberty, Great Olympics and Elmina Sharks all win, they stay up while Bechem will join Bolga down; leaving Chelsea, Olympics, and Allies on 39 points. In this case, Olympics would rank above the two because they have a better head to head than Allies and Chelsea. Between Chelsea and Allies, their head to head is locked having played a 1-1 draw in both ties between the two. If the PLB decides to use goals scored in the entire campaign, Chelsea would rank above Allies having scored 35 to the 24 Allies scored. If not, then a play-off would be used to decide who joins Bechem and Bolga. Highly unlikely isn’t it? Or maybe not.

 

 

 

 

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