Tusker, Sfaxien fire blanks in Caf Confed Cup clash

 Aymen Harzi

CS Sfaxien's Aymen Harzi (left) vies for the ball with Tusker's Daniel Sakari during the first leg of their Caf Confederation Cup second round match on November 28, 2021 at the Nyayo National Stadium, Nairobi.

Photo credit: Sila Kiplagat | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Tusker's coach Robert Matano responded immediately with the introduction of Teddy Osok and John Njuguna for Senaji and Shami Mwinyi respectively.
  • Salih should ahve won it for the visitors, but he fired wide from a one-on-one situation with goalkeeper Bwire.

Tusker remain in contention of reaching the Caf Confederation Cup group stages after battling to a 0-0 draw against Tunsia's CS Sfaxien in the first leg of their second round clash at the Nyayo National Stadium Sunday.

Both sides were guilty of missed chances in the match played behind closed doors. The return leg is on December 5 in Tunisia with the winner advancing to the group stages, where they are guaranteed Sh27 million from Caf.

"The referee worked to our disadvantage because that goal (Jackson Macharia's) was not a handball. But the boys have played well because I saw urgency," said Tusker coach Robert Matano.

Robert Matano

Tusker coach Robert Matano looks on during the first leg of their Caf Confederation Cup second round match against CS Sfaxien at the Nyayo National Stadium on November 28, 2021.

Photo credit: Sila Kiplagat | Nation Media Group

"I have seen they have many weakness like their defence is not strong and we will capitalise on them. They are the ones under pressure and I am sure we will beat them."

CS Sfaxien coach Giovanni Solina said: "This is a pity because we played very well. My team deserved to win, but I recognise Tusker is a very good team with quality players. The qualification is now open and I know it will be very difficult."

CS Sfaxien's defence was the busier of the two in the opening minutes as Tusker went in search of an early goal.

The hosts, who welcomed back Boniface Muchiri from injury, thought their hardwork had paid dividends on 14 minutes, but Jackson Macharia's goal from was Daniel Sakari's throw-in was cancelled by the referee.

Macharia was adjudged to have handled the ball, a call the brewers vehemently protested.

Sfaxien, the competition's 2007 and 2008 champions, had their first real chance eight minutes later, but Tusker's goalkeeper Brian Bwire made a brilliant save to deny Aymen Harzi.

Ibrahim Joshua

CS Sfaxien's Fares Nerji (left) vies for the ball with Tusker's Ibrahim Joshua during the first leg of their Caf Confederation Cup second round match on November 28, 2021 at the Nyayo National Stadium, Nairobi.

Photo credit: Sila Kiplagat | Nation Media Group

The brewers continued to knock on the Tunisian's door, Ibrahim Joshua and Muchiri all being unlucky at the half-hour mark.

Joshua rose high to meet Sakari's delivery, but the ball rolled across the face of goal to the right. Muchiri then attempted to find the back of their opponents' net with a powerful, long-range shot, but it went off narrowly to the left.

Tusker survived four minutes to the break when Mohammed Salih wriggled inside the box beating defender Hillary Wandera and goalkeeper Bwire, but his weak shot was cleared by defender Karlos Kirenge.

Wandera, who went down injured while attempting to dispossess Salih, was stretchered off after being attended to by the medics for about five minutes, and Kevin Monyi took his place.

Jackson Macharia

Tusker's Jackson Macharia (left) vies for the ball with CS Sfaxien's Alaa Ghram during the first leg of their Caf Confederation Cup second round match on November 28, 2021 at the Nyayo National Stadium, Nairobi.

Photo credit: Sila Kiplagat | Nation Media Group

The visitors made a change at the restart, Hamrouni Mohamed replacing Banhourin Chris.

They had the first attempt of the second-half after Salih beat his marker inside the box to test Bwire with a close-range shot.

Clyde Senaji was not lucky with his response at the other end from long-range shot from a Tusker corner-kick.

Sfaxien, under the tutelage of Italian coach Giovanni Solinas, made a double change on 69 minutes, Hazem Haj and Chadi Hammani coming in for Naby Kamara and Farez Marzouki respectively.

Jackson Macharia

Tusker's Jackson Macharia shoots during the first leg of their Caf Confederation Cup second round match against CS Sfaxien at the Nyayo National Stadium on November 28, 2021.

Photo credit: Sila Kiplagat | Nation Media Group

Tusker's coach Robert Matano responded immediately with the introduction of Teddy Osok and John Njuguna for Senaji and Shami Mwinyi respectively.

Salih should ahve won it for the visitors, but he fired wide from a one-on-one situation with goalkeeper Bwire.

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