Wonder Club, Accra Great Olympics on Friday highlighted their title credentials with a composed performance to pip a star-studded Medeama SC 1-0 in their match day 18 encounter of the Ghana Premier League (GPL) at the Accra Sports Stadium.
The win takes them to top of the table after close contenders, Karela FC and Asante Kotoko drew in their respective games.
Having finished the first round of the competition in second position, their highest in almost two decades, the Good Friday encounter looked a test to define their resolve to end the season among the elites.
A strong line-up of Medeama consisting of youthful and experienced players cast in the disposition of Vincent Atinga, former defender of Hearts of Oak, Justice Blay, Eric Ofori Antwi, Ahmed Toure, Kwesi Donsu, Zakaria Mumuni and Prince Opoku Agyeman gave the task a gargantuan look.
However, a 35th minute goal scored by Samuel Abbey Ashie Quaye proved to be the defining moment the Wonder Club needed to amass all three points to keep their dream on course.
With a fine squad of their own, Olympics paraded a sophisticated midfield marshaled by Gladson Awako, James Akaminko and Razak Kasim that neutralized the Medeama threat.
However, the failure of the Oly attack consisting of Abdul Manaf Mudasiru, Ashie Quaye and Joshua Rhule to convert chances that would have given a very fair reflection of the game, took some shine off an authoritative display.
Both sides started the game cautiously with Toure and Opoku Agyeman trying to make an early impact; making some dashes into the Oly area but Eric Bonsu, Philip Sackey, Ebenezer Sekyere and Hamza Zakari kept things tight at the back for the wonder boys.
With Toure and Opoku Agyeman heavily ‘policed’, the efforts of Medeama was restricted to the midfield, lacking the urgency to find the Oly goal.
The first good chance fell to Oly’s Rhule whose goal bound strike was blocked in the 15th minute; followed by two defence-splitting passes from Akaminko which the Oly attacker failed to intercept.
Medeama’s coach Yaw Preko was forced to effect the first substitution of the afternoon after goalkeeper Eric Antwi got injured in an aerial battle and was replaced by former Ashantigold goal tender Frank Boateng.
Ten minutes later, they conceded the goal that fetched Oly the maximum points after Mudasiru put Ashie Quaye through with a delicate pass; the U-20 star controlled into the Medeama goal area to slot past an onrushing Boateng for the opener.
Atinga went to Medeama’s rescue two minutes later with a vital clearance of Ashie Quaye’s chip into an almost empty net with the only clear chance for Medeama going to Opoku Agyeman whose strike was dealt with by Oly goalie, Benjamin Asare.
The tempo dropped in the second half that saw Oly dominate for greater spells and missed with three glorious chances, two of which fell to Awako and Medeama coming close on the 80th minute through Toure but his shot was saved.
BY ANDREW NORTEY
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