ANA
Premium Journalist
2 minute read
14 May 2017
8:06 pm

Stars and MC Alger draw in Confed Cup

ANA

Platinum Stars and Algerian side MC Alger played to a 1-1 draw in their Caf Confederation Cup group match played at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

Michael Mabule of Platinum Stars is challenged by Sid Ahmed Aouadj of Moulouda Club Alger during the CAF Confederation Cup match between Platinum Stars and Mouloudia Club on 14 May 2017 at Royal Bafokeng Stadium. (Sydney Mahlangu /BackpagePix)

The half-time score was 1-1.

For South African PSL club Stars, this was their first-ever appearance in the group stages of this competition after they successfully negotiated their way through the preliminary rounds.

But, even though they were the home side on Sunday, they played second fiddle to the organised Algerians for most of the 90 minutes.

But it seemed as if the achievement of being in the competition at this prestigious stage hindered Stars initially as the visitors from Algeria took an early lead.

With the nervous Stars defence still wondering whether they were in a football match or not, Alger went 1-0 up in the sixth minute when Brahim Bedbouda headed in from a corner-kick.

It meant that Stars had to come out and play, but they found it tough going against the well-organised, highly structured Alger defence.

The South Africans kept plugging away, though, and they were rewarded for their perseverance when Katlego Khunou netted the equaliser with a powerful shot in the 43rd minute.

The Algerians had two opportunities to score early on in the second half, but Stars goalkeeper Steven Hoffman was equal to the task with two smart saves.

At the other end, there was also action when Stars pressed forward and they had a great chance to score, but Alger’s keeper Faouzi Chaouchi dealt adequately with Benson Shilongo’s attempt.

Alger, though, were in the ascendancy for much of the second half and put the home side under tremendous pressure, with Amir Karaoui squandering two inviting openings.

Stars went to their bench to try to change things when coach Cavin Johnson substituted Shilongo and brought in striker Bongi Ntuli.

It added a bit more offensive spark to the Rustenburg side’s offensive approach as they tried desperately to snatch a late goal. Unfortunately, though, it wasn’t to be and 1-1 was the way it ended.