By Tilda Acorlor
The Kpando Sports Park is due to be shut down for renovation works ahead of the next Ghana Premier League season following the qualification of Kpando Hearts of Lions into the premiership.
The club will use the park as a venue for its home matches when the next season kicks off.
The Board Chairman of Heart of Lions Football Club, Eric Kutortse, who disclosed this in an interview with GTV Sports, said the closure is necessary for the Club to put the park in good shape to meet the Ghana Football Association’s standards as home grounds for Premier League matches.
Kpando Heart of Lions have sealed promotion back to the Ghana Premier League after being relegated in the 2014/15 season.
Though the former Premier League side will be using the Kpando Sports Park as its home venue, the Park does not meet the Ghana Football Association’s requirements for Premier League matches.
There are no seats or other essential facilities for use by spectators, players, and team managers at the Park, hence the decision by the management of the Club to close it down to pave the way for rehabilitation. The 5,000-seat park’s construction is expected to take three months.
At its coronation ceremony into the Premiership at Kpando, the Board Chairman of Heart of Lions Football Club, Mr. Eric Kutortse gave the assurance that management will ensure that the Club stays in the Premier League to win more laurels to motivate fans. He said the initial plan is to renovate the Park.
“To be able to play in your home, you need certain facilities, and we have to convince ourselves that we will be able to put up those facilities to be able to play the premiership in our home ground,” Mr. Kutortse said.
“The stadium will be closed down after this match (Coronation match), and the work will start immediately on the field. We are supposed to get 2000 to meet the standards, we are putting up 5000 capacity, and all the VIP that us needed to meet the standard. That will be done within 3 months,” he added.
The Club’s President, Dr. Randy Abbey, said the club is in talks with the National Sports Authority and has reached a meaningful agreement to ensure that Kpando Park meets the standard of a premier league venue.
“We are in talks with the National Sports Authority (NSA), and we have reached some meaningful agreement. We are hopeful that, although it’s a short period, we will be able to do what is necessary to ensure that this place remains a premiership venue,” Dr. Randy said.
In the meantime, Lions will play the rest of their home matches at Ho Sports Stadium. The decision, though welcoming, will affect the Regional FA, which uses the facility for Division Two, Three, Women’s, and Juvenile League matches.