Kaizer Chiefs were comprehensive 3-0 winners over Elgeco Plus in a Caf Confederation Cup first round, first leg tie at the Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday night.
On a comfortable evening for Amakhosi, a 33rd-minute strike from Philani Zulu and a Leonardo Castro brace late in the second half made it two wins from two since head coach Ernst Middendorp’s arrival last week.
Chiefs took a while to get going in Durban, but grew increasingly stronger as the opening half progressed.
Their first clear opening came in the 17th minute when Khama Billiat went in on goal, but the shot was too close to visiting keeper Bastia Eddit, who made a routine save.
Eddit also intervened well to stop Castro in his tracks, and then kept out a low free kick from Billiat.
The Madagascans’ only chance was to materialise in the 24th minute, but Ndratohary Ranaivoson’s snap effort was never going to trouble Virgil Vries in the home goal.
The breakthrough came for the Soweto side when Zulu rifled in a shot at the near post, after Billiat had threaded in a lovely pass on the left-hand side of the box.
Chiefs remained comfortably on top and had more chances either side of halftime, but Castro miscued in the 43rd minute, and Billiat’s 52nd-minute effort was easily dealt with by Eddit.
While Amakhosi’s lead was never under threat, they failed to make much happen in the opposition box.
It was only in the 72nd minute that the next chance arrived, but after an excellent build-up, Zulu’s shot was saved by the visiting keeper.
A clear advantage was always going to be important for the return leg, and Chiefs added a second goal in the 86th minute when Billiat cleverly slipped a pass to Castro, who picked his spot in the corner after being unmarked 12 yards out.
A clear foul by Elgeco defender Bonard Touvounel on Dumsani Zuma right on 90 minutes allowed Castro to put the icing on the cake in KwaZulu-Natal as he slotted home the third goal of the night from the penalty spot.
The return leg in Madagascar will take place next week Saturday, December 22.
African News Agency (ANA)