Pirates held to a goalless draw

2013-07-21 14:00

It still boggles the mind how on earth Orlando Pirates failed to win this CAF Champions League match against AC Leopards of Congo-Brazzaville.

Pirates did everything right but score goals in this encounter and they could live to regret those missed chances.

Supporters who braved the chilly Joburg weather deserved to be kept warm by at least one goal but left the stadium disappointed.

The only good thing coming out of the game was the return of Thabo Matlaba and Andile Jali after injuries and both finished the match unscathed.

If Pirates are to progress to the semifinals of the tournament, they need to know that winning at home is non-negotiable, but they failed here last night as they were held to a goalless draw.

With their two next games away in Egypt, they should have made their home advantage count.

They travel to defending champions Al Ahly early next month and with the political situation in Cairo unstable, it remains to be seen how they will cope with the conditions up north. They will also have a date with Zamalek, also in Egypt, and a victory at home would have been a good cushion going away.

However, it is not a lost course for the Buccaneers. But they would need to improve drastically.

Frankly, there was no reason Pirates went into the break with the score still level as they should have at least taken a 2-0 lead to interval. Sifiso Myeni had two glorious chances towards the end of the half, but they both went begging.

The first half was characterised by too many astray passes and unforced errors as it was evident the players were still rusty after an almost two-month break.

Whatever coach Roger De Sa said at interval seemed to have woken up the players, but still goals eluded them.

New signee Lennox Bacela thought he had given Pirates the lead, but his header was cleared off the line in one of the many chances the Buccaneers created.

Pirates threw everything they had at the visitors, but it was not to be.

A draw was a good result for the visitors as they clearly came here for a draw, knowing they would finish the job at home.

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