Asante Kotoko gave their fans a great homecoming with a 2-0 victory over Bechem United on match-day two of the 2021/22 Ghana Premier League (GPL) Sunday afternoon.
Late goals from Ismail Ganiyu and Samuel Boateng did the job for the Porcupine Warriors in their first game at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in nearly two years after the venue was closed for renovation.
The result lifts Asante Kotoko back to the top of the league with 6 points after their first two games of the season.
Bechem left Kotoko off the hook twice in the first 15 minutes when Emmanuel Avornyo and Augustine Okrah missed decent chances.
Stephen Amankonah missed a great opportunity to have given the hosts the lead on the 19th-minute mark when set up cleanly closer to the posts, goalkeeper Iddrisu Abdulai made a great effort to keep it out.
Abdulai then produced some stunning stops to deny Kotoko towards the end of the first half and just after the break.
Coach Prosper Narteh Ogum made changes that positively affected the flow of the game for Kotoko, just as he had done in their 3-1 win over Dreams FC in the opening round.
Six minutes from time, Dennis Modzaka was adjudged to have brought down substitute Isaac Oppong inside the box for a Kotoko penalty.
Captain Ismail Ganiyu made no mistake in driving it into the net from 12 yards for the opener in the 86th minute.
Off-season signing Samuel Boateng nodded in a terrific Ibrahim Imoro delivery in the final minute of additional time from the left flank after a poor clearance from the Bechem United backline.
Asante Kotoko put on a late show again to welcome back their fans into the Baba Yara Sports Stadium after almost a two-year absence.
The record league winners will travel to play Bibiani Gold Stars next on Friday, November 12 while Bechem United play hosts to Elmina Sharks.
By Adamu Benin Abdul Karim