Kaizer Chiefs through to CAF Champions League KO stage after sensational comeback

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Khama Billiat (Gallo Images)
Khama Billiat (Gallo Images)

Kaizer Chiefs twice rallied from behind to claim a 2-2 draw with Horoya AC in an entertaining Champions League Group C encounter in Conakry on Saturday evening.

The home side capped off a strong first-half showing by grabbing the lead in first-half injury time but Chiefs produced a much-improved showing after the break, eventually drawing level through Daniel Cardoso's spot-kick in the 67th minute.

Horoya reclaimed the lead just two minutes later but Chiefs again clawed their way back on level terms as Billiat added his name to the scoresheet with 14 minutes left on the clock.

The first half proved to be a one-sided affair as the hosts claimed control of proceedings early on and never looked back.

The first chance of note arrived in the 12th minute as Chiefs midfielder Nkosingiphile Ngcobo fired narrowly wide of the right-hand post from outside the area.

But from that point onwards it was virtually one-way traffic as Horoya dominated possession of the ball, creating several good attempts on goal.

Yakhouba Barry and Salif Coulibaly failed to find the mark with their respective headers in the opening half-hour, while Morlaye Sylla saw his long-range shot saved in the top-left corner by Chiefs' veteran goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune.

Coulibaly again squandered a great chance in the 31st minute, heading over the bar from close range after being teed up by Sebe Baffour's tantalising cross.

Khune was later called into action to keep out efforts from Barry and Boniface Haba as Horoya continued to search for the opening goal.

And they finally got the breakthrough they were looking for in the second minute of injury time, Barry heading home from close range from yet another inviting Baffour cross.

Horoya started brightly after the half-time break and gave Chiefs an early scare as Mandela Ocansey fired narrowly wide of the top-right corner.

Chiefs hit back with a chance of their own just a couple of minutes later, but Khama Billiat was unable to capitalise, heading over from the centre of the box.

It went back and forth for the next few minutes as Horoya and Chiefs traded blows but the breakthrough would finally arrive in the 66th minute as the referee pointed straight to the penalty spot after Abass Traore's handball in the area.

Daniel Cardoso stepped up to take it and made no mistake, firing a powerful effort straight down the middle to level the scores.

However, Horoya didn't waste any time reclaiming the lead as they went on to score their second of the game just two minutes later, Sekou Camara heading into the top-right corner from close range.

However, Chiefs didn't let their heads drop after conceding the second, and after going close to levelling through Lazarous Kambole's headed effort on 72 minutes, they drew level four minutes later as Billiat arrowed a powerful shot into the bottom-right corner from the centre of the box, Dumisani Zuma providing the assist.

Horoya redoubled their efforts in a bid to reclaim the lead late on but failed to make their chances count. Robert Odongkara headed wide in the 86th minute while team-mate Sylla fired high and wide from outside the box on 90 minutes.

Sylla was denied a late winner by Khune a couple of minutes later before Khadim Diaw sent a speculative long-range effort high and wide of the mark.

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