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AmaZulu bow out of CAF Champions League with pride against Horoya

Thabo Qalinge provided the cross which resulted in AmaZulu’s goal against Horoya. Picture: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Thabo Qalinge provided the cross which resulted in AmaZulu’s goal against Horoya. Picture: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Published Apr 1, 2022

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Durban - AmaZulu ended their first ever CAF Champions League campaign with some pride as they played out to a 1-1 draw with Horoya AC at the Stade General Lansana Conte in Guinea on Friday night.

Horoya scored on the stroke of halftime as Dramane Nikiema put them ahead. AmaZulu paid the price for trying to implement complex football tactics as Ismael Camara punished them by winning the ball back for his side before playing in Nikiema who produced a shot that gave Usuthu goalkeeper Jean-Noël Amonome no chance of saving.

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AmaZulu drew level early in the second half through an own goal. Salif Coulibaly, who had been having a solid game for Horoya in defence, ended up deflecting the ball into his own net as he tried to defend a shot from Thabo Qalinge.

With Veli Mothwa absent from the Usuthu squad altogether for the game, it was Gambian international Amonome who earned a rare start for the Durban based club.

Mothwa was part of the Bafana Bafana squad which recently toured Europe. He started the game against Guinea before serving as cover to Ronwen Williams for the game against France.

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It was clearly the home side who dominated the game as they had 60% of possession in the first half. AmaZulu’s only and best opportunity in the first half came after 12 minutes as Tshepang Moremi was nicely teed in from out wide although his shot ended up going horribly wide.

Moremi was struggling in terms of confidence and it was hardly surprising that Usuthu opted to replace him with veteran Lehlonolo Majoro shortly after they scored.

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Striker Bongi Ntuli who has not been playing much lately found himself in a good position in the 58th minute. His shot was symbolic of someone who has not been playing much lately as it went straight to the Horoya keeper.

AmaZulu, who recently parted ways with coach Benni McCarthy, can take some positives from their debut Champions League campaign. They did score 7 points in their group and also famously recorded a victory over African giants TP Mazembe in a preliminary tie to advance to the group stages of Africa’s premier club competition.

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AmaZulu’s next game will be on Wednesday as they travel to the Peter Mokaba Stadium to play against bottom of the table Baroka FC.

Now that they are out of all competitions, Usuthu’’s prime focus will be on earning a top eight finish in the league this season.

@eshlinv

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