The 2016 Ghana Premier League season is just seven match-days away from its conclusion and so much is about to be set in motion
By: Sammie Frimpong
It’s that time of the season again in the Ghana Premier League when, with the clock quickly ticking to a climax, clubs are so desperate to either retain their top-flight status or win the title that they’d try almost anything to attain those desired objectives.
And that’s when you’d observe one or more of the following phenomena:
LATE, LATE GOALS
The final games of any Ghana Premier League season brings late goals — and by ‘late’, I mean really late. Great Olympics memorably fetched two in the last five minutes of their concluding GPL fixture last season when it seemed, given results elsewhere, that late double against champions Ashantigold would be crucial in halting their relegation-bound descent. Well, they eventually didn’t but, hey, those goals could have made all the difference in a parallel universe.
Then there are those results which just don’t make sense to minds which can’t ‘think far’, and which probably wouldn’t have been recorded in earlier rounds of the campaign: the bottom team beating the champions-elect, clubs that would ordinarily battle each other to a stalemate being separated by five-goal margins, etc. Miracles do happen, yes, but some of these scorelines are — for want of a better word — just too miraculous.
And it isn’t just the clubs that are keen on boosting their goal counts exponentially. Also involved are the players themselves, especially those in contention for the topscorer’s prize. When that particular sideshow goes neck-to-neck, forwards who’ve laboured to score a mere dozen times across the previous 20-odd games suddenly grow potent enough to strike in threes and fours just because they feel like it. Shock not, beloved.
DUBIOUS REF CALLS
The match officials rarely ever miss their cue to play their own part in the deeply intoxicating end-of-season cocktail — and sometimes they are the ones who make it truly explosive, what with all the dubious decisions. You’ll see penalties which never were, goals balls that never fully crossed the line, and glaring offsides ignored. Never mind, though; all those pieces come together to complete what is, quite literally, a puzzle.
Spicing it all up are the wild and not-so-wild speculation thrown about. Which late goal seemed too soft to be genuine? Which results looked too surreal to be believable? Which hat-trick appeared ‘wind-assisted’? Which penalty decision shouldn’t have been? And who paid how much to whom to ensure what?
Well, it’s all for you to deduce for yourself as the next few weeks unravel. Just don’t blink.