Mariano Barreto was thrilled with Asante Kotoko's mature performance during the 2-1 win over Karela United on Wednesday afternoon.
Our Portuguese Head Coach said after the game he was happy with the Porcupines fighting spirit and collective efforts.
Emmanuel Gyamfi put us forward in the 21st minute before what appeared a good goal by Evans Adomako was disallowed for offside.
We needed the three points to leapfrog Hearts of Oak to the top of the table with the arch-rivals scheduled to play Legon Cities on Thursday night.
But our charge was dealt a blow on the hour mark when Karela United equalised in the 60th minute with a goal that was initially disallowed by the referee for an offside.
We did not relent and our fighting spirit earned a penalty 14 minutes later after Evans Adomako was impeded in a late challenge by the Karela United goalkeeper.
Fabio Gama elected himself for the kick and send the goalkeeper the wrong way, sending us three points clear on the table.
Speaking during his post-match interview, Mariano Barreto said the Porcupines 'showed that as a team, we are very strong.'
Here are the main comments from Barreto following our superb winů
"We are happy because we won the game. It was not easy. Our spirit is always the same, each much we face, we come to win, we get it and I have to congratulate my players because it wasn't an easy match."
"During the game, it happens some strange moments. We made two goals for which for me were clear, but the Assistant Referee stood up the flag and we went to the dressing room winning 1-0."
"I think that there is no doubt our first half was fantastic. We played very well. Karela have a good team, but we are better as a team."
"In the second half, Karela did not create any chance of a goal, they tried to put long balls and they won a goal, the Assistant Referee stood up the flag, many people go to press him and he changed his mind. It's the first time I have seen this."
"We found the second goal. Before I had some doubts but after I saw the video and all the people are saying it is a clear penalty and it ended 2-1."
"It should have ended 3-1 but it ended 2-1 which is okay. The most important things is the hard work we did. We showed that as a team, we are very strong".
"We do not have individual players solving problems, we solve our problems collective as a team and that makes me very happy."
"This is what we do in training daily. You cannot imagine how they (the players) work. Because if you come to the training, you could see that it is because of the hard work they make, we come into the games and are able to make them easy sometimes. Like today, we knew it was going to be difficult."
"For me, only one thing is strange. Karela played today like playing the final of the Champions League. I don't know what they are fighting for if it's for the result or for another thing."
"If they fight like they fought today, sure they would have been able to win the league. If they are fighting like they fought today, the Ghana league would be more competitive and I hope they continue like that. This is the way to work hard to push the level of football forward and it should not only be when coming to play Kotoko."