Medeama defender Vincent Atingah kept his side's title hopes alive when his 80th minute header broke a robust resistance mounted by Karela United, handing the homeside a hard-fought 1-0 win in the Western derby at the Akoon Park on Saturday.
After failing to convert a plethora of goalscoring chances with striker Prince Opoku Agyemang and Zakaria Mumuni the worst culprits, Atingah, who had marshaled his defensive duties superbly turned the hero when he scored the only goal.
Karela hadMan-of-the-Match Richard Baidoo to thank for his excellent reflexes that kept the 'Passion and Pride' boys in the game for the most part as he constantly punched away dangerous balls Medeama hurled at him even though the homeside were also undone by erratic shooting from their attackers.
An electrifying and entertaining game, both sides adopted an attacking approach with Medeama the better of the two sides in executing their plan.
As early as the seventh minute, Medeama captain Tetteh Zutah nearly set the pitch alive when he bumped forward excitedly, skipping past the visitors' defense but his pin-point delivery which was met by striker Prince Opoku Agyemang's head was foiled by Baidoo.
Medeama increased their pressure in search of the opener but Opoku who led the charge was unable to find the net despite a glorious opportunity in the 21st minute. Striker Zakari Mumuni was unlucky not to give Medeama the lead in the 25th minute as he watched agonizingly his superbly struck shot bounce off the woodwork.
Medeama's struggles to score gradually emboldened Karela to initiate dangerous attacks that resulted in Liberian forward Varney Boakai Sando presented with a rare opportunity to open the scores for Karela but he shot weakly at Medeama goalie Frank Boateng.
This was followed by Karela's impressive midfielder Umar Bashiru putting Maxwell Boakye who deputized for Diawise Taylor through, but the striker's hesitation and poor decision-making allowed Atingah to cover for the homeside.
Medeama finally had their breakthrough through Atingah. Nortey fired a volley which Baidoo pushed away. From the resulting corner-kick, Atingah popped up to finish off Fatawu Sulemana initial header which Baidoo had stretched elastically to keep out.