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VIDEO: Hearts fall to Bechem in first defeat under Slavko Matic

Hearts of Oak suffered their first defeat of coach Slavko Matić era as Bechem United came away with a 2-1 win against the Phobians to wrap up match-day 10 of the 2022/23 betPawa Ghana Premier League (GPL) on Monday afternoon.

The Serb had picked up five wins and two draws in all competitions since taking charge but his side got beaten at the Cape Coast Stadium and missed out on a chance to go past arch-rivals Asante Kotoko into second on the league table.

Bechem stunned Hearts by taking their chances early.

A brilliant Isaiah Nyarko pass from the centre circle saw Cephas Kofi Mantey race for the ball on the right flank before hitting with precision past goalkeeper Richmond Ayi – the opener in the 6th minute.

The second goal arrived in the 13th minute when the lanky Emmanuel Avornyo snatched possession from Gild Otanga right behind the centre line, charged forward down the left, and skipped past Zakari before releasing a low cross into the 6-yard box for the waiting Hafiz Konkoni to thump home.

Hearts were allowed to see more of the ball after falling behind 2-0 down but lacked the cutting edge up front with Kwadwo Obeng Jnr, Benjamin Yorke and Eric Esso the most notable culprits.

The hosts came closest in the 75th minute when substitute Caleb Amankwah had his header off a free-kick go into the right post.

While chasing the game, Hearts were whittled down to ten men in the 85th minute. Enock Asubonteng came on for Yorke at the hour mark. However, the winger picked up two avoidable yellow cards 14 minutes apart (71′ and 85′) and had to be marched off by referee Eric Sefa Antwi.

Bechem also had their share of the sending off with centre-back Joseph Kinful picking up his second yellow card in the first minute of additional time for time wasting.

In the 98th minute, Hearts centre-back Robert Addo Sowah hammered home a rebound off a corner kick, but it was too late for them to stage a comeback since time had already expired.

The 2-1 loss not only sees Hearts miss out on moving into second but they are now level on points with Bechem United with 16 each after 10 games.

Bechem United’s Emmanuel Avornyo won the man-of-the-match award.

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