The 2015/16 Ghana Premier League ended last Sunday, bringing to a conclusion seven months of thrills during which certain clubs, games and individuals stood out for a variety of reasons. It’s these notable ‘feats’ that KickerGH recognises below:
SCANDAL OF THE SEASON: ALL STARS-EDUBIASE MATCH-FIXING CLAIMS
It was huge, still is, and could be huger still: oh, the brewing match-fixing scandal which could well blow Wa All Stars’ Premier League conquest into smithereens, we mean. The only party that couldn’t care less, really, are the other team fingered in the mess: blissfully relegated New Edubiase.
GAFFE OF THE SEASON: ABDOULAYE SOULAMA (HEARTS v KOTOKO)
It’s hard finding a better candidate for this award than Abdoulaye Soulama’s moment of ease horror when playing for Hearts of Oak against his former employers, Asante Kotoko, in the league’s first round. The Burkinabe shot-stopper got a bit too comfortable on the ball and let in the game’s only goal. Following that howler up with a red card?
MYSTERY OF THE SEASON: TECHIMAN CITY
That ‘almighty’ Techiman City were relegated is quite mysterious, wasn’t it?
The club got relegated despite being one of the best at home in the league, picking 34 points out of an available 45 at the Nana Ameyaw Park over the course of the season; to put that into context, champions Wa All Stars managed 37. The Real Citizens, however, garnered only three points on the road. Call it a tale of two cities, but it sure is a mystery even the great Sherlock Holmes would lose several nights’ sleep over.
GAME OF THE SEASON: ASHGOLD v KOTOKO
At KickerGH, we have a love for things that make our eyes pop. You know the stuff that leave you tongue-tied and doubting if any of it is real?
Well, that’s exactly why Ashgold hosting Kotoko was our game of the season. The Miners had really struggled to score goals before that fixture late in the season, averaging less than a goal-a-game throughout the season (24 in 28 at that stage). They did find their scoring boots in one of the most ‘entertaining’ matches we saw this season, though, putting five past Kotoko in that game alone. For sheer jaw-dropping value, this — doubling as our favourite result overall — was our game of the season.
‘OMG!’ RESULT OF THE SEASON: (ASHGOLD 5-3 KOTOKO)
Now there were a number of contenders for this one, but the best of the bunch, it seems, was literally reserved for last. Fast-forward to match-day 29, when Kotoko travelled to Ashantigold to play their [losing] part in an eight-goal thriller which had a fair few fans hissing contemptuously in the end. ‘Wind-assisted’, perhaps?
SACKING OF THE SEASON: DAVID DUNCAN (KOTOKO)
It wasn’t too long into the season when troubled, fidgety clubs got into trigger-happy mood, and one of the earliest to strike struck hardest. The victim in that instance, David Duncan, always had it coming after the embarrassing start the Kotoko side he trained endured. To Duncan’s credit, though, Kotoko lacked the guts to sack him outright, merely asking him to “step aside“. Anyway, that particular episode dragged on a couple of months (during which Duncan’s assistant, Michael Osei, stepped in tentatively and struggled, too) till, in June, Duncan finally got his sack — and one fat ‘take-away’ for consolation.
ENDANGERED SPECIES OF THE SEASON: GREAT COACHES
This was a season in which coaches weren’t particularly brilliant, guys. No club won more than half of all games it contested. The best in that regard were champions Wa All Stars — and they had a sizable chunk of their 15 wins at home (sorry, Enos Adepa!). Sacking of coaches wasn’t too rare and, had clubs not been a tad cautious with respect to chopping and changing, there would have been far more casualties.
FAN OF THE SEASON: AVRAM GRANT
Ghana boss Avram Grant never saw many Premier League games, but no individual was as sought-after for a seat at stadia nationwide than the Israeli, resulting in him being dragged all over the country — almost like he was wanted everywhere at once. It would have been fun if Grant had actually enjoyed a single minute of it all. Or did you, sir?