Accra Hearts of Oak have made a considerably bold step towards qualifying for the group phase of the 2021/22 CAF Confederation Cup after a victory over JS Saoura of Algeria.
The 21 time Ghana League holders claimed a 2-0 win over the North African club last Sunday at the Accra Sports Stadium in the first leg playoff.
A well fashioned combination from defence and midfield saw Daniel Afriyie Barnieh’s floated pass headed for the opener by Salifu Ibrahim on the 16th minute.
The former Eleven Wonders forward will have his place taken by yet another forward, Isaac Agyenim Boateng who had mother luck smiling on him on the 72nd minute.
The former Medeama attacker pounced on left back, William Denkyi’s pass to unlock JS Saoura’s defence for Hearts of Oak’s second and his first continental goal.
The Phobians will go into the second leg with somewhat slight advantage knowing the caliber of opposition that comes from North African clubs when playing at home.
Hearts of Oak coach, Samuel Boadu admits the first leg was a tough one despite the win.
“It was a very hard game because they are well prepared. I saw their training at McDan, they are fast on the ball and their movement, tactically they are very good.
“So we decided to come in and not allow them to possess and they sometimes use the high balls, the long balls and we decided to block all their high balls.
“But it’s quite unfortunate, we created a lot of chances but we scored two goals.
Samuel Boadu is not a happy man as his side failed to nail the Algerians with the numerous chances created. He looks forward to a tough, yet well planned second leg in a week.
“Actually me I’m not happy at all, we should have scored more than two,” Samuel Boadu said.
“Going for the return game, I’ve learnt a lot from the WAC game so strategically we need to strategize and go for the next match.” Samuel Boadu added.
Hearts of Oak who have won all three continental trophies; CAF Champions League, Confederation Cup and the Super Cup, crushed out of the 2021/22 CAF Champions League after a 6-2 aggregate defeat to Wydad Athletic Club of Morocco.
The defeat dropped them into the CAF Confederation Cup which they won in 2004 at the expense of their rivals, Asante Kotoko at the Baba Yara Stadium Stadium. A win, goalless draw or a slim defeat will take Hearts of Oak into the group stage of the CAF Confederation Cup.