SuperSport suffered a 2-1 defeat against TP Mazembe in the first leg of their Caf Confederation Cup final on Sunday, writes MARSHALL GOUTS.
The visitors started the brighter of the two teams and were awarded the first chance of the game when Thuso Phala picked out Bradley Grobler in the area in the 12th minute, but the striker fired over from close range.
SuperSport continued to do all the attacking and came close through efforts by Dové Wome and Siyabonga Nhlapo respectively.
Mazembe settled and looked dangerous with their enterprising style of play, and they came agonisingly close to opening the scoring in the 18th minute when Chico Ushindi Wa Kubanza rattled the upright.
The home side were, however, not to be denied as Adama Traoré’s long-range strike was hit into the net by goalkeeper Ronwen Williams, who could not see much.
Matsatsantsa almost equalised on the stroke of half-time when Grobler got on to the end of a corner ahead of the goalkeeper, but he couldn’t slot it home and the Mazembe defence scrambled the ball away.
Eric Tinkler’s side equalised matters two minutes after the half-time break when Sipho Mbule’s long-range effort flew past the outstretched keeper.
Mazembe responded with an attacking substitution in the 59th minute as they introduced Elia Meschak for Rainford Kalaba, while Solomon Asante replaced Ushindi.
The home side restored their lead in the 67th minute when Daniel Adjei Nii expertly finished home from a corner.
Tinkler introduced Fagrie Lakay for Jeremy Brockie in the 73rd minute. Mazembe were denied what looked like an obvious penalty after Dean Furman’s reckless lunge from behind on Asante.
The defending champions managed to maintain their one-goal lead to run out 2-1 victors.
Mazembe XI: Matampi, Issama, Kimwaki, Kabaso, Kasusula, Sinkala, Adjei (Mputu 81′), Kalaba, Ushindi, Malango, A.Traore.
Subs: Gbohouo, Zola, Mondeko, Kouame, Mputu, Asante, Elia.
SuperSport XI: Williams, Nhlapo, Daniels, Mashamaite, Modiba, Furman, Mbule, Phala, Wome (Kekana 78′), Brockie (Lakay 72′), Grobler (Farmer 84′)
Subs: Pieterse, Farmer, Kekana, Lakay, Nkhatha, Dube.
Photo: Samuel Shivambu/Backpagepix