Ahead of their last league fixture for the 2022/2023 Ghana Premier League (GPL) against premier league pioneers Accra Hearts of Oak, Berekum Chelsea centre back Yaw Dankwah has warned that the Bibires will have no mercy on the relegation threatened Phobians on Sunday, as they seek to play their hearts out to maintain the professional integrity of the league.
Hearts of Oak are currently sitting 11th in the 18-team league with 45 points, just 3 points away from safety depending on the results to come from the last round of matches come Sunday. The Phobians will make a trip to the Berekum Golden City Park to face Berekum Chelsea for the last round of matches to round off the current campaign, and a loss against Chelsea will likely see Hearts of Oak relegated for the first time since the start of the GPL in 1956.
Having lost four (4) of their last five (5) premier league matches, one cannot confidently predict a win for the Phobians against Chelsea on Sunday, considering their current run of results.
Speaking to ghanasportspage.com ahead of Sunday’s do-or-die encounter, Berekum Chelsea defender Yaw Dankwah has debunked perceptions that they will consider Hearts of Oak by playing a match of convenience to enable the Phobians avoid relegation. He argues that for the integrity of the professionalism status of the league, there is no way Hearts of Oak will have it easy at Berekum.
“The Ghana Premier League is a professional league and it doesn’t matter which club is older or which club is a debutant. Once it’s a league where everyone is fighting for the title race I can’t say we will play it soft for them. It can’t be possible for us to play it soft just because Hearts of Oak have been in the league for long so we don’t have to let them be relegated. That they have to beat us to remain in the league, no, it can’t be possible”, Dankwah stressed.
According to the Berekum Chelsea Player of the month of March, Hearts of Oak can only win on fair grounds, provided they are able to outplay the hosts, but for Chelsea to play it soft on the basis of consideration is certainly out of the equation.
“It’s a game we are going to play, if they beat us, fine, on fair grounds, but for us to play it soft for them on grounds that Hearts of Oak are old in the league so they should come and beat us to maintain their slot in the league, we can’t do that. Because a lot of teams had been in the league for long, the likes of (Tano) Bofoakwa, Berekum Arsenal among others were playing in the league for long but when it happened to them they were relegated, so we can’t say Hearts of Oak are seniors in the league and they need points from us to maintain their slot in the league so we will leave it to them. We are professionals, we can’t do that’’, he added.
Like Accra Hearts of Oak, Berekum Chelsea have also lost their last three premier league fixtures both at home and away against Dreams FC, Nsuatreman FC and Bechem United, and losing against Hearts of Oak will make it four loses in a row but Yaw Dankwah is confident his side will pass the test this time.
All eighteen premier league games will be played simultaneously on Sunday across all venues with kick off set for 3:00pm prompt.