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Match Preview: Desperate Hearts seek first win against strong Medeama

2019/20 Ghana Premier League

Match-day: 2

Medeama SC vs Hearts of Oak

Venue: Akoon Community Park, Tarkwa

Date: Sunday January 5, 2020

Kickoff : 15:00 GMT

Hearts of Oak will be seeking their first win when they travel to play Medeama SC in the 2019/20 Ghana Premier League match-day two at the Akoon Community Park Sunday.

The Phobians were beaten 1-0 at home by Berekum Chelsea in the season opener last Sunday and, therefore, will be striving hard to make amends on the afternoon.

The encounter, expected to produce fireworks, will see Hearts enter with a new trainer Edward Nii Odoom after Director of Football and Head coach Kim Grant was shown the exit on Tuesday despite training with the players in the morning.

Nii Odoom has a bit of experience on the local scene, having coached Tema Youth. He will be hoping to start with flying colors after his side had a setback in the first game.

The Phobians do not have good records in terms of their previous visits to Tarkwa and are therefore expected to struggle. They can boast of only one away victory in Tarkwa – a 2-0 win in 2016 – which happened under the tutelage of Kenichi Yatsuhashi.

Edward Nii Odoom is expected to parade same or ring very few changes to the squad used by Grant in the first game since no injuries have been reported at the moment. Captain Fatawu Mohammed will also be available for selection on the day.

Medeama will be hoping to deepen the woes of their visitors as they go into the game with much confidence after a blistering performance in the first week.

The Mauve and Yellows will be eager to build on the resounding 3-1 away victory over Ebusua Dwarfs on match-day one. However, they will have to put in much to subdue visiting Hearts at their newly-adopted Akoon Park.

Being the first game at home and on an unfamiliar field, Coach Samuel Boadu will thread cautiously in bid to pick all points.

Although they will miss the services of Eric Kwakwa and Rashid Nortey, the Tarkwa-based side have deadball expert Kwame Donsu and defender Ibrahim Yaro returning to the team after missing the first game.

Pre-match talks

– Medeama SC Coach, Samuel Boadu:

“We are playing against one of the finest teams in Ghana and Africa and will be ridiculous to underrate them. They have some fantastic players and will be extra motivated against us.

“They played well against Berekum Chelsea. Forget the scoreline because that’s how football is. Sometimes you are just unlucky, and I think they were last week.

“We don’t have lesser respect simply because they lost 1-0 at home. No, it’s the other way round. We have to be very careful when they visit.

“They are a good football team and clearly the favourites for this game.

“Everybody will be ready. Hearts will be 100 per cent ready and we have to battle it out.”

Hearts of Oak coach, Edward Nii Odoom:

”We lost on the opening day of the season last weekend but that is behind us now and we will respond to this challenge against a very difficult side.

”The boys have arrived safely in Tarkwa in high hopes and, with what I have observed in training, we should return to Accra with a good result.

”Tomorrow should be a good day for us and with our collective effort we will get the win and, this is what the boys will be aiming for.”

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