TEAM NEWS: Robin Gnagne and Malik Akowuah have been passed fit for this weekend’s clash with Liberty.

Anthony Nimo (knee) is out.

Leonard Tawiah and Patrick Razak have recovered from the respective knocks they picked up against WAFA and will be in the team for the Liberty game.

MATCH PREVIEW: Accra Hearts of Oak will take a short trip across town to face Liberty Professionals at the Dansoman Park in the ultimate game of the first round of the 2016/17 Ghana Premier League fixture on Sunday.

The Phobians beat run-away league leaders WAFA 2-1 at the Accra Sports Stadium on Monday and they will be hoping to build on that win by defeating Liberty Professionals on Sunday.

“The players trained well because we gave them a day rest on Wednesday and so they trained well on Thursday,” head coach Frank Nuttall told HEARTS NEWS in his pre-match interview.

“Inusah [Musah] is still out. Robin [Gnagne] is back in the squad and in the group. Malik [Akowuah] is back in the group. [Agbashie] Dotse is a few days and he should be okay; there is nothing much there. For Anthony Nimo, I am just waiting for him to be medically accessed so that I can move forward with that. Leonard [Tawiah] and [Patrick] Razak are fine.

“We have recovered well from the previous game and we have given the players a little bit of time to unwind before we start to wind them up again and ready in preparation and focused for the next game.

“It does not really matter whether it is the last game of the first round, we always try to win. A week after that, we have got another game and a week after that too we have got another game so I think we always focus on the next game and always try to win the next game.”

Liberty Professionals are eleventh on the league log having won four, drawn five and lost five of their last 14 league fixtures.

The Dansoman-based side have an unbeaten record at home having won four of their last seven games at the Dansoman Park. Inter Allies (2-0), Medeama (3-2), Dwarfs (2-1), and Tema Youth (2-1) have been beaten at the Dansoman Park whilst Wa AllStars (0-0), Aduana (1-1), and Olympics (0-0) have each picked a point at the home of Liberty Professionals.

The “Scientific Soccer Lads” have appointed ex-Kotoko coach Michael Osei as their new coach and they will be coming all out to prove a point for their new gaffer.

Coach Frank Nuttall’s side have picked just a solitary win on the road this season, and having lost in Tema (2-1) and dropped points against Inter Allies (0-0) in the Greater Accra Region, they will go all out to get their first win in the capital outside the Accra Sports Stadium.

 

MATCH FACTS:

The two sides have met 33 times since Liberty Professionals’ promotion to the Premier League in 1999. Hearts have triumphed 18 times against Liberty Professionals. Liberty Professionals have won 9 times and drawn 6 times against Hearts of Oak in the league.

72 goals have been scored in this fixture. Hearts lead the way with 49 goals against Liberty’s 33.

SEASON                               SCORE/RESULT

1999                       HEARTS 2 – 0 LIBERTY

                                LIBERTY 0 – 1 HEARTS

 

2000                       HEARTS 4 – 2 LIBERTY

                                LIBERTY 3 – 2 HEARTS

2001                       HEARTS 4 – 2 LIBERTY

                                LIBERTY 1 – 3 HEARTS

 

2002                       LIBERTY 1 – 2 HEARTS

                                                        (Charles Taylor, Awudu Adama)

                                HEARTS 0 – 1 LIBERTY

2003                       LIBERTY 1 – 1 HEARTS

                                HEARTS 3 – 1 LIBERTY

                                (Don Bortey, Ablade Morgan, Lawrence Adjei)

 

2004                       HEARTS 3 – 0 LIBERTY

                                (Emmanuel Osei Kuffour (2), Ablade Morgan)

                                LIBERTY 3 – 0 HEARTS

 

2005/06                LIBERTY 0 – 1 HEARTS

                                                       (Prince Tagoe)

                                HEARTS 1 – 0 LIBERTY

                                (Bernard Dong Bortey)

 

2006/07                HEARTS 1 – 1 LIBERTY

                                LIBERTY 0 – 0 HEARTS

2007/8                  HEARTS 1 – 0 LIBERTY

                                LIBERTY 1 – 2 HEARTS

 

2008/9                  HEARTS 3 – 1 LIBERTY

                                (Eric Nyarko, Samuel Afum, Elvis Acheampong)

                                LIBERTY 0 – 0 HEARTS

 

2009/10                LIBERTY 0 – 1 HEARTS

                                                       (Andrew Ayittey)

                                HEARTS 2 – 3 LIBERTY

 

2010/11                HEARTS 0 – 1 LIBERTY

                                LIBERTY 1 – 2 HEARTS

                                                        (Douglas Nkrumah, Esme Mends)

 

2011/12                LIBERTY 2 – 0 HEARTS

                                HEARTS 0 – 1 LIBERTY

2012/13                HEARTS 2 – 0 LIBERTY

                                (Robin Gnagne, Ashittey Ollenu)

 

                                LIBERTY 1 - 3 HEARTS

                                (Sadat Karim, Mahatma Otoo (2)

 

2013/14                HEARTS 2-0 LIBERTY

                                (Eric Kumi, Robin Gnagne)

                                LIBERTY 3 – 1 HEARTS

                                (Ashittey Ollenu)

2014/15                HEARTS 1 - 1 LIBERTY

                                [Richard Yamoah]

2015/16                HEARTS 0 – 1 LIBERTY

                                LIBERTY 1 – 1 HEARTS

                                [Cosmos Dauda]