Zesco United sink Smouha in Confederation Cup
Smouha suffered a 1-0 away defeat against Zesco United in their CAF Confederation Cup Group C opener at Levy Mwanawasa Stadium on Saturday.
The side coached by former Zamalek manager Momen Soliman put up a hard fight and ensured their hosts to sweat for maximum points.
Despite Smouha pressing on a couple of occasions, it was Zesco United who had the lion’s share of clear-cut chances in the opening half.
Davy Daka had the first attempt with a snapshot from long range and the end product was off-target. Then, Jesse Were with acres of space in the box, had his shot blocked and the match stayed level.
As the game unfolded, Smouha formed a solid midfield and limited Zesco to operating only in their half. However, they could not penetrate through to the penalty box.
In the second half, Islam Mohareb put up a daunting line in left wing before unleashing a shot which went slightly over the bar of Joseph Banda.
Moments later, John Ching’andu forced a handball on Smouha defender Patrick Malo and the referee pointed to the spot. Kenyan striker Jesse Were converted the penalty to put Zesco in the lead in the 73rd minute.
Smouha had a number of opportunities henceforth; captain Ahmed Manga linking with Mohareb who failed to make contact as goalkeeper Jacob Banda grabbed the ball so fast.
Then second half substitute Boubacar Diawara attempted from a long range but his effort went slightly over the bar.
In the end, hosts Zesco United held to a hard fought 1-0 win over the Egyptians.
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