Accra Hearts of Oak Sporting Club, commonly referred to as Hearts of Oak or just Hearts is a professional sports club based in Accra(Greater Accra), Ghana. The club competes in the Ghana Premier League, the Premier division on the Ghanaian football pyramid. Hearts has won the Premier League twenty times, the FA cup a record ten times, the President’s Cup twice, and the CAF African Champions League and the CAF Confederations Cup each once.
The club was founded on 11 November 1911. Hearts of Oak won their first major match in 1922 when Sir Gordon Guggisberg, governor of the Gold Coast, founded the Accra Football League. Hearts won 6 out of 12 seasons in this league. In 1956, Hearts joined the Ghanaian football league and have flourished since. In 1956, Hearts joined the Ghanaian football league and have flourished since.
In the year 2000, Hearts of Oak won the Ghana FA cup, the Ghana Premier League and for the first time in their history the CAF Champions League. This was the most successful year in the Clubs’ history.
HONOURS 2004 CAF Confederation Cup winners 2001 CAF Super Cup Champions In 2000 the club won the trio thus Ghana FA cup, the Ghana Premier League and the CAF Champions League Ghana Super Cup (2 trophies) 1997/1998
PREMIER LEAGUE CUPS (20 titles) 1956, 1958, 1961–62, 1971, 1973, 1976, 1978, 1979, 1984, 1985, 1989–90, 1996–97, 1997–98, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2004–05, 2006–07, 2009.
FA CUPS (10 titles) 1973, 1974, 1979, 1981, 1989, 1990 (After winning a protest that declared them winners), 1993–94, 1995–96, 1999, 2000.
On May 9, 2001, 127 people died in Africa’s worst footballing disaster. During a match between rivals, Hearts of Oak and Asante Kotoko. Trouble started when supporters of Asante Kotoko began ripping out seats in an act of hooliganism in protest at a goal allowed by the referee. The match was officiated by referee J.Wilson Sey, from Cape Coast. Police reacted by firing tear gas into the crowd, it has been suggested that this was an over-reaction. Reports suggest that the gates to the ground were locked and the stadium was not up to FIFA standards. The rush to escape the tear gas was a contributory factor to the death toll. A commission inquiry, indicted six police officers in its initial report, but they were not convicted as it was deemed that the deaths could have been caused by the stampede instead of the tear gas.
Ghana’s two most successful football teams played that day, the Accra Hearts of Oak (The Phobians) Sporting Club and the Asante Kotoko (Porcupine Warriors) Sporting Club,. Officials were anticipating crowd disturbances, and had taken extra security measures. Accra scored two late goals, and a referee called 2–1 Accra, resulting in disappointed Kotoko fans throwing plastic seats and bottles onto the pitch.
The police responded by firing tear gas into the crowd. Panic and a stampede ensued as fans tried to escape. Gates were locked and the stadium’s compromised design left a bottleneck, with fewer exits than originally planned. Ghana Institute of Architects called the stadium a “death trap.” After the hour-long ordeal, it was found that 117 deaths resulted from compressive asphyxia and 10 fans died from trauma.
A fan, Abdul Mohammed, had passed out from the tear gas and moved to a morgue, thought to be dead. He became conscious after someone stepped on his foot, narrowly missing a burial. Reports claim that medical staff had already left the stadium, as the incident happened near the end of the match. Some gates were locked, preventing escape.