Probably the most refreshing football news this week is the announcement by the Ghana Football Association that the F.A. Cup has returned and we are guaranteed some electrifying knock-out games over the next 3 years, beginning from December 2010.
Apart from the GH¢3 million MTN Ghana sponsorship invested into the competition, the return of the F.A cup will come with immense benefits for all stakeholders of Ghana’s beautiful game. Particularly, the return of the F.A cup will give 112 participating clubs the chance to showcase their players. Fringe players will also get the opportunity to win some playing time.
Additionally, knockout competitions like FA cups are always exciting for fans. The return of the FA Cup also means that the ever-anticipated and thrilling Champion of Champions Cup (Ghana’s own version of the Community Shield) that heralds the beginning of every new season will come back.
The last time the tournament was played in 2001, King Faisal, Kotoko, Mysterious Dwarfs, and Ashgold were the semi-finalists. Asante Kotoko were 1-0 victors over King Faisal, courtesy Kwame Bueh’s goal. Kotoko fans will remember with fondness the contribution of their greats like Joe Okyere, Osei Kwame and Aziz Ansah (The Honourable). This is how it went:
Semifinals [November 28, 2001]:
Asante Kotoko 5-0 Cape Coast Dwarfs
1-0 Joe Okyere
2-0 Joe Okyere
3-0 Charles Asamoah
4-0 Aziz Ansah
5-0 Osei Kwame
King Faisal Babies 4-0 Goldfields
1-0 Issah Debrah
2-0 Frank Osei
3-0 Frank Osei
4-0 Joe Agyemang
Final [December 9, 2001]
Asante Kotoko 1-0 King Faisal Babies [aet]
1-0 Kwaku Bueh
This season, 111 games will be played over 7 rounds. 16 Premier League Clubs, 48 Division 1 clubs and 48 Division 2 clubs have confirmed their participation. Even though the tournament has not started, some Kumasi Asante Kotoko fans have give strong indications of revenging their most painful F.A. Cup defeat. It was in 1979 when Hearts of Oak, defeated Kotoko 4-3 in the F.A Cup. But the loss was not as painful as the 2 quick fire goals Hearts scored by the 11th minute of the game. Given the disparity in their form this year, many Kotoko fans are confident that this will be their year for vengeance and have hoped that the fixtures bring Hearts their way.