GPL: Is the love back?

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In the 80’s, 90’s and early 2000’s was the year Ghana Football was interesting to Ghanaians and was always their first choice for any sport.

Those Sunday afternoon experiences at Kaladan Park, the Gyandu Park, and not forgetting how exciting it was watching Bofoakwa Tano and BA United at the Sunyani Coronation Park – all helped build up a solid path for the game.

Stadiums during those years get filled up in the early hours before kickoff.

The story changed in the last decade; player exodus was the order of the day, supporters lost trust in referees, the game suffered unethical setbacks.

The once topflight league was no longer attracting interest from chunk of the people – once their passion, it was no more.

The current Ghana Football Association leadership after assuming office launched a campaign to bring the lost love for domestic football back.

Bringing the love back was not going to be a nine day wonder, it was going to take time and effort from all stakeholders.

The 2020-2021 Ghana Premier League season has proved that with time, the people will love the local league all over again.

Key games have whipped the interest of people as it was in the past.

Prior to Hearts of Oak’s game against Great Olympics, key personalities including Prof Joshua Alabi, Gabby Otchere-Darko all made it a point to talk about the game and also make an appearance at the stadium to watch the game.

The game got many talking.

Tickets for the game were sent to the market 48 hours to the start of the game.

People queued at the various sales point and the matchday tickets were sold out in less than two hours.

On matchday, the atmosphere accross the country was charged, fans were cheering either of the two teams from wherever they found themselves.

A viewing pub in Madina during the Super Clash

The scenes were heavenly. When Afriyie Barnieh scored for Hearts of Oak, a fan in the stands collapsed out of joy, a picture of a Hearts of Oak fan, who went to the stadium with a bible to pray for side’s victory also circulated.

Not even a major music awards show the previous day could cease the Ghana Premier League conversation on social media.

The super clash proved one thing – Ghanaians still love domestic football and the love is just close to coming back.

By Francis Hema||Ghana

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