Kotoko pass first Coton Sports test

Emmanuel Gyamfi - Scored first goal for Kotoko

Emmanuel Gyamfi – Scored first goal for Kotoko

Kumasi Asante Kotoko yesterday managed a 3-2 victory over Coton Sports Garoua at the Military Stadium in Yaoundé in a first leg CAF Confederation Cup final qualifier the Ghanaians could have won handsomely but for their profligacy in the first half.

Despite fetching the opener through Emmanuel Gyamfi as early as the 10th minute, Kotoko laboured for another 20 minutes before doubling the lead through Maxwell Baako on the 30th minute.

Within that period, the Porcupine Warriors could have recorded a cricket score as Songne Yacouba, Emmanuel Gyamfi, Baakoh and Abdul Fatawu – the trio that incidentally scored the goals – took turns to waste begging chances in the half when the hosts went to sleep.

Coton Sports pegged Kotoko back with a goal from the spot when a defensive Baakoh needlessly brought an opponent down in the goal area for a penalty which club veteran, Kamilou Daouda, planted firmly in the 41st minute.

Coton Sports fought gamely in the rest of the four minutes left in an attempt to end the half on an even note but the Kotoko defence remained solid and thwarted their efforts.

Kotoko started the second half on a positive note, needing just five minutes to add to the tally as Fatawu intercepted an attack initiated by the Coton Sports goalkeeper.

With the goalkeeper out of position, Fatawu lobbed the ball over him into the net to the disappointment of the home fans.

But Lambert Gueme Araina was on hand again for the host to reduce the tally midway through the half, presenting them with a decent opportunity to fight back to earn a respectable result.

The result leaves Kotoko in a very good position to qualify as any slim win or draw in the reverse fixture would be enough to see them through to the league stage of the competition.

That could bring some pressure on the Ghanaians who must be cautious against the Cameroonians who would surely come to Ghana with all guns-blazing.

But Kotoko could have ‘killed’ the game before the half time whistle went as they went on goal wasting spree.

After Gyamfi’s 11th minute opener, the Cameroonians opened up but that only created the space for Kotoko to attack as Fatawu was sent through on goal, coming face to face with the Coton Sports goalkeeper who blocked the curler.

Yacouba was the worst culprit on the day as he wasted glorious opportunities before the Cameroonians scored their first goal.

Kotoko will host the second leg tie at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in Kumasi on Sunday.

BY TIMES SPORTS REPORTER

 

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