Kumasi Asante Kotoko on Sunday, October 27, 2019, hosted Ivorian side FC San Pedro at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in the first leg of their CAF Confederations Cup final round qualifier.
Kotoko dropped down to Africa’s second-tier club competition after they were knocked out of the CAF Champions League by Etoile du Sahel.
The home leg against FC San Pedro was scheduled to kick off at 3:00 pm at the Baba Yara Sports Staduim where Kotoko normally enjoys a lot of support from Kumasi natives.
Around 11:00 am, the newly-elected GFA President, Kurt Okraku, visited the team at the Sports Hotel to motivate the players and the technical team to get a win later in the day.
A number of Asante Kotoko fans at Sports Hotel sang, drummed and chanted in an entertaining ‘jama’ session as the team prepared to leave for the Baba Yara Sports Stadium.
The usually sizable crowd that’s present at Kotoko home games was surprisingly absent, perhaps due to the disappointing exit from the CAF CL.
However, the fans that did make it to the stadium said they hoped for a win with a lot of goals.
With about two hours left until kick-off, the home team arrived at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium.
The officiating team from South Africa arrived right after Kotoko’s bus reached the stadium.
After a couple of minutes, the SC San Pedro team also arrived at Baba Yara
The arrival of SC San Pedro
The officiating team then inspected the pitch ahead of the game.
It was then time for the warm ups with both sets of players loosening up before kick-off at 3:00 pm.
The match was intense and hotly contested with both teams coming close to breaking the deadlock but the first half ended goalless.
The downpour in the first half initially delayed kick-off in the second half as the referees inspected the pitch to determine if the match could continue.
After assessing that the pitch was too waterlogged and thus, unplayable, the game was officially called off with the scores level at 0-0.
The final 45 minutes were played on Monday, with Kotoko finally finding the net.
Naby Keita scored a late winner, in the 95th minute, to give the Kumasi side the advantage heading into the second leg.