Former Asante Kotoko captain Yusif Chibsah has refused to blame Coach Hans Dieter Schmidt for their ‘painful’ 2004 Confederation Cup final defeat to bitter rivals Hearts of Oak.
The Porcupine Warriors were beaten 8-7 on penalties after tying 2-2 on aggregate in front of their home fans at the Baba Yara Stadium.
The major talking point after the game was Schmidt’s game management and was largely blamed for the loss with the substitution of Kotoko’s best performers on the field, Charles Taylor and Michael Osei.
The German tactician came under heavy criticism and scrutiny and was later sacked by club.
“It’s always easier to analyze the match after it ends. The postmortem of any game is easy so it’s okay for people to share their ideas and comments but as to what would’ve happen if those players were kept on the pitch, Nobody knows” Chibsah said in an exclusive interview with FootballMadeInGhana.
“That is the job of a coach, when they gamble with a substitution like that and it goes well they are hailed the best but when it backfires they have to live with the consequences. But I wouldn’t conclude 100% that we would’ve won if Taylor and Osei were kept on the pitch” he continued.
“I think we were just unlucky not to have won that trophy. In both legs we took the lead and had everything in our favor especially the second leg at home in Kumasi. We had the fans and the home advantage, we knew the Babayara pitch better than Hearts of Oak so we had no reason not to win that trophy but penalties decided”