Hearts of Oak dropped vital points at the Accra Sports Stadium on Thursday in a match day eight goalless encounter with the Miners, Ashantigold.
It was a painful sight for the Phobian faithful who watched their forward men squanders too many glorious chances including a one-on-one situation with Hearts attacker, Daniel Afriyie Barnie and the Ashgold goalkeeper, Frank Boateng which the striker shot feebly into the goalie’s hands.
Ironically, the entertaining aspect of the game was provided by the stylish and silky Ashgold players that reduced the Phobians to passengers as they watched in glee the ‘Aboakese’ lads pass around to rip the Hearts midfield apart.
Emmanuel Nettey dictated the pattern for Hearts from a deep midfield role, spraying passes to the right and left sides of the field but the likes of Kofi Kordzie and Joseph Esso found it difficult to break the Ashgold defence.
The man-to-man passing game from the back created a few problems for Ashgold, affording Hearts the chance to attack them around their goal area.
But Hearts failed to capitalize on the defensive errors resulting out of miscommunication from the visitors’ goalkeeper Boateng and his defencemen with Hearts being denied what looked like a penalty at the early stages when the Ashgold goalie fouled a Hearts attacker.
It was followed by another close-shave miss by Abdul Aziz Nurudeen who blasted a chance in front of goal over the bar.
The first real chance for the defensive minded Ashgold side came in the 36th minute but Benedict Wobenu’s strike was saved by Richard Attah.
Hearts responded well a minute later and was presented with a decent chance in the 37th minute but Barnieh missed the chance.
Barnieh’s nightmare continued in the second half when he was set for the ‘kill’ but with only the goalkeeper at his mercy, he shot straight into the goalkeeper’s hands.
Then on two occasions, Ashgold threatened the Phobians with a header and a pile-driver from Appiah McCarthy’s but the Hearts goalie delivered good saves to prevent an upset.
Hearts kept probing for a breakthrough but the Miners maintained their composure and entertained the encouraging crowd with their beautiful inter positional passes till the end of the game.
BY ANDREW NORTEY