Hearts of Oak recorded a victory over Moroccan champions Wydad AC to gain advantage in their CAF Champions League tie on Sunday.
The Phobians beat the Wydadis 1-0 in the opening match of the first round of the Champions League at the Accra Sports Stadium.
Isaac Mensah’s one strike in the opening half sufficed for to allow the Rainbow club to secure the victory.
Hearts Coach Samuel Boadu named a very robust starting lineup for the match against opponents Moroccan giants.
Kofi Kordzi, who scored the opening goal after Hearts defeated Guinean team CI Kamsar in the Preliminary round, was awarded the starting position.
Emmanuel Nettey also took the spot in the absence of Caleb Amankwah in midfield from the previous game.
The Moroccans were close to securing the first goal, however, Hearts goalkeeper Richard Attah made a sumptuous effort to stop the game in the beginning of the game.
Wydad got close once more after an attempt, made to Zouhair El Moutaradji, was again thwarted by Attah.
The Phobian were in the spotlight during the final minute of the match, when an in-flight ball reached Daniel Afriyie Barnieh who had only goalie Ahmed Reda Tagnaouti in his sights, but they were unable to do so.
Barnieh was knocked down by the goalkeeper. It appeared like a penalty, but the referee waived.
Hearts finally found the breakthrough just four minutes before the break after Mensah brilliantly slotted in an impressive cross by Salifu Ibrahim from the left.
The Phobians did not make the best use of scoring opportunities they had during the second half of the game.
Wydad will play Hearts in the Mohamed V Stadium in Casablanca for the second leg next week. The winner will advance to the group stage.
The group stages begin in February 2022, following the Africa Cup of Nations.