It’s been a long time coming but finally, the Ghana Premier League is due to begin this weekend following a long legal battle.
An Accra High Court effectively gave the green light earlier his week when they threw out an injunction by relegated Accra Great Olympics, before the Ghana Football Association declared the 2018 season will be underway on Saturday despite the threat of another injunction from Olympics.
Olympics claim there are outstanding disciplinary cases that if properly dealt with would preserve their place in the top flight, and have petitioned world football body FIFA as well as battled in court over that. The Ghana Football Association says that is not the case.
The dispute has cost the league at least a month and beyond that, serious reputational damage.
“Potential sponsors would surely be dissuaded by these things,” Ibrahim Sannie Daara, Communications Manager of the Ghana Football Association told KweséESPN.
“Our clubs and players have had their plans derailed while our quest to align our calendar with Europe has been tossed out of the window.”
The delay means the Ghana Premier League could be on even during the World Cup in June.
Derailed by the legal dispute, the various club representatives have told KweséESPN that they are just happy that league action is back again.
“We’ve effectively been running a full operations and paying bills without the opportunity to earn money because we were not playing so this is a huge relief,” Albert Commey, Chief Executive Officer of Aduana Stars told KweséESPN.
“Training and not playing games is odd so I am delighted that we can play again and hopefully do better than we did last season,” AshantiGold coach C. K Akunnor added.
The Obuasi club will kick off their season against the champions from two seasons ago, Wa All Stars, determined not to endure another season battling relegation.
Inter Allies, with former Hearts of Oak boss Kenichi Yatsuhashi in charge, and Bechem United will set the season rolling on Saturday in Tema, but the pick of games on the opening weekend will be in Sogakope where Asante Kotoko will attempt to beat WAFA on their home turf for the first time.
Accra Hearts of Oak are away in Techiman, where they face Eleven Wonders in their Ghana Premier League debut. The other newly promoted sides – Dreams FC and Karela FC – are at home to Elmina Sharks and away at Medeama, respectively.
Ebusua Dwarfs face Berekum Chelsea in the other fixture on Sunday, while the game between defending champions Aduana Stars and Liberty Professionals has been postponed because of Aduana’s engagement in the CAF Champions League.
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