Although currently top of the table in Zone A, a defeat could end the Porcupines' hopes of finishing among the top two who will be handed tickets for the semi-finals as second-placed Ashanti Gold and third-positioned Medeama sit only one and two points below respectively.
Trailing Ashgold by four points, fourth-spotted Aduana Stars are out of the running following their 0-0 draw with Eleven Wonders on Sunday.
|Aduana Stars vs Asante Kotoko|
|Date||Thursday, May 23|
Squads & Team News
Although out of the running for a spot in the next round, Aduana Stars will certainly relish playing spoilers at home on Thursday.
How successful they will be will depend on the likes of danger-man Bright Adjei, veteran Yahaya Mohammed and in-form player Fatawu Abdul-Rahman.
With Kotoko's sharp attack, Aduana will be happy to call upon the likes of Richard Anane, Farouk Adams, Emmanuel Akuoko and Hafiz Adams to hold a strong defensive line.
Kotoko have no doubt been boosted by the injury return of talisman Songne Yacouba, who was on target in his first start of the competition in a 2-0 win over Medeama on Sunday.
And what a partnership it was as the Burkinabe neatly teamed up with leading scorer Abdul Safiu Fatawu who netted the other goal in the last game. With eight goals to his name so far, a lot will be expected from Fatawu whose fine form has been rewarded with a place in Ghana's provisional squad for the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt.
Coach CK Akonnor has struggled to find a solid midfield pair following injury to Kwame Bonsu's partner Richard Senanu during their Caf Confederations Cup campaign. Owing to their good showing during the weekend, veteran Jordan Opoku and Emmanuel Agyemang Badu are likely to get the starting nod against the Fire Boys.
Sunday's clash will be the second meeting between Kotoko and Aduana Stars in the Special Competition.
In the first leg, a Mohammed Abass second-minute goal handed the Porcupines all three points in a matchday one fixture at Kumasi's Baba Yara Sports Stadium.
A lot of attention will also be on Aduana's Yahaya Mohammed who was formerly on the books of Kotoko.
Elsewhere in Zone A, second-placed Ashgold will secure a place in the last four should they pick up three points in their trip to Techiman Eleven Wonders on Thursday, the same day Medeama host bottom-positioned Berekum Chelsea.
The last round of matches of Zone B will be on Sunday. Leaders and the already-qualified Hearts of Oak are billed to face third-from-bottom Dreams FC away in Dawu.
The second qualifying ticket is expected to go to one of second-placed Karela United or third-spotted Libert Professionals who are separated by two points. On Thursday, they play at home to Ebusua Dwarfs and Wafa respectively.
In the final game, Elimina Sharks will host Inter Allies at the Nduom Sports Stadium.