Tinkler happy with away goal

Monday, 20 November 2017 (15:30)

SSU head coach Eric Tinkler © Gallo Images
SSU head coach Eric Tinkler © Gallo Images

SuperSport United coach Eric Tinkler rued the countless scoring opportunities his charges had but remains optimistic ahead of the Caf Confederation Cup final second leg against TP Mazembe.

Matsatsantsa went down 2-1 to Mazembe in Lubumbashi on Sunday in a game they could have easily wrapped had they been more clinical in finishing.

Despite that, Tinkler said there were some positives from the first leg, which make the second leg even more interesting. A 2-1 defeat in the first leg may seem a tall order for some but not so for Tinkler and his charges. The Matsatsantsa boss believes that away goal, a cracker scored by Sipho Mbule, will give the home side a slight edge.

Taking a pass from captain Dean Furman, Mbule took advantage of retreating Mazembe defenders to unleash a sizzling long-range drive that flew past goalkeeper Ley Matampi.

The return leg will be played on Saturday night at Lucas Moripe Stadium. They have penciled the match down for a night kick-off – 8pm, knowing that their visitors do not like to play at night.

“Obviously, we came here to score and we managed to achieve that. I said to the players I’d rather leave here with a 2-1 loss than a 0-0 draw. It was very important for us to score that away goal especially against a team like TP Mazembe. They are a very experienced team and if you do not score here it becomes very difficult at home,” said Tinkler.

Meanwhile, Mazembe coach Phil Mihayo expressed confidence that the Congolese will return from Pretoria with a positive outcome.

“We are happy with the result because we are winning the game. We are not losing this game and we are going to try and be 100 percent for the second leg,” said Mihayo.

One strategy that Mazembe will not deploy in the second leg, according to Mihayo, is to sit back and be defensive. “If we go there and try to contain them, it will be difficult for us because the opponent can put you under pressure every time,” he said.



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