On Sunday 9th January, 2005 Accra Hearts of Oak sc won the maiden CAF Confederation Cup 9-8 following a marathon penalty shootout in the final match against their bitterest rivals Kumasi Asante Kotoko at the Kumasi sports stadium.
The Porcupine Warriors took the lead in the 51st minute through Charles Taylor, who joined Kotoko from Hearts in 2003, but Adjah Tettey brought the game level before the referee ushered the two sides into a penalty shootout.
The first leg in Accra a week earlier ended in another one all draw and in a similar vein Kotoko took the lead before Hearts secured the equalizer to make the second leg quite open.
In the penalty shootout, Dan Quaye, Emmanuel Osei Kuffuor, Francis Bossman, Acquah Harrison, Lawrence Adjei, Ablade Morgan, Adjah Tetteh and Michael Donkor scored for Hearts while skipper Amankwah Mireku missed his kick. For Kotoko, Issah Ahmed, Frank Osei, Yusif Chibsah, Michael Asante, Godfred Yeboah, Dan Yeboah and Michael Ofosu-Appiah scored from their kicks while Edmund Owusu-Ansah and skipper Joseph Hendricks missed their kicks.
Some Kotoko supporters remained on their seat after Michael Donkor scored the winning goal in the penalty shootout and this was reminiscent of how Wydad Casablanca of Morocco (WAC) stormed the same venue to get an away goal in a 2-1 defeat and consequently won the Cup Winners Cup under their noses.
The CAF Confederations Cup is an amalgamation of the Cup Winners Cup which started in 1975 and the CAF Cup which began in 1992. The Ghanaian giants became the first to play in the final and this was also the first time two clubs from the same nation engaged each other in the final of any major CAF Inter Club competitions.
When the match started it was Kotoko’s Michael Osei who headed the ball over the bar in the 10th minute after he beat an off side trap to put his head to the ball that was floated from a free kick taken by Michael Ofosu-Appiah.
This early move was followed in the 17th minute with Yusif Chibsah’s tricky shot which went a shade of mark and was followed two minutes later by Ofosu-Appiah’s curling free kick that sailed gently over the bar.
Hearts gradually came into the game and in the 20th minute they earned their first corner kick which was wasted and again came close to taken the lead in the 23rd minute but Godfred Yeboah saved the situation by heading the ball away from Prince Tagoe.
Veteran Emmanuel Osei Kuffuor was the first to attract the yellow card in the 29th minute when he fouled Stephen Oduro from a back tackle. Still probing for a goal, Kotoko earned their first corner kick in the 43rd minute but they could not utilise it.
Back from recess, Charles Taylor who had been tightly marked by the Hearts defence shot Kotoko into the lead in the 51st minute with a terrific shot from Michael Osei’s header to Ofosu-Appiah’s cross. This goal signalled the wake up call to Hearts who put Kotoko under sustained pressure and earned a corner kick in the 55th minute but Francis Bossman shot wide from the resultant kick.
Kotoko came into the picture again in the 58th minute and Ofosu-Appiah hit the cross bar from about 40 metres with a terrific shot with Charles Taylor’s header to the rebound flying over the bar. Kotoko at this stage sent in Dan Yeboah for Michael Osei in the 66th minute and a minute later, Hearts goalkeeper Sannie Mohammed was booked for deliberately stepping on Yusif Chibsah.
Hearts also pulled out Bernard Don-Bortey for Ablade Morgan and Louis Agyemang for Lawrence Adjei in the 71st minute while Frank Osei took over from Nana Arhin Duah with Charles Taylor coming out for Edmund Owusu-Ansah in the 73rd and 78th minutes respectively for Kotoko. Hearts kept on probing for the equaliser which came in the 80th minute through Adjah Tetteh who connected home skipper Amankwah Mireku’s corner kick to throw the game wide open.
And when the penalty kicks were taken, Hearts scored eight of their nine kicks while Kotoko scored seven out of their nine kicks to give Hearts the ultimate trophy that was presented by the Vice President, Alhaji Aliu Mahama.
Hearts line-up: Sannie Mohammed, Dan Quaye, Amankwah Mireku, Acquah Harrison, Michael Donkor, Francis Bossman, Adjah Tetteh, Lawrence Adjei, Louis Agyemang, Prince Tagoe, Dong Bortey/Ablade Morgan.
Coach: Cecil Jones Attuquayefio
Kotoko line-up: George Owu, Michael Ofuso Amoah, Godfred Yeboah, Joe Hendricks, Issa Ahmed, Stephen Oduro, Yusif Chibsah, Michael Asante, Michael Osei, Nana Arhin Duah/Frank Osei, Charles Taylor (Edmund Owusu Ansah).
Coach: Hans Dieter-Schmidt
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