–Forced SuperSport to Draw 1-1
Barrack Young Controllers (BYC) yesterday forced South African side SuperSport United to a 1-1 draw in the first leg of the CAF Confederation Cup play-off at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium.
The draw dimmed the Liberian champions’ chance of advancing to the group stage as they now have the task of scoring at least 1-0 or 2-1 to qualify, while their South African counterparts will simply need a 0-0or 1-0 to advance.
BYC enjoyed the good opening of the match by proving their readiness to their home fans by possessing the ball and had the first goal scoring opportunity in the 7th minute after midfielder Abdulai Bility missed a header from close range.
Three minutes later it was midfielder Fagrie Lakay of SuperSport United who got the game’s opener after sliding in a low cross from Thuso Phala from down the left angle of BYC’s penalty area.
The Go Blue Boys tried to get the equalizer in the 16th minute through forward David Tweh’s right foot strike that traveled over the bar.
Forward Tweh drove through the right flank of his opponents’ defense by beating three defenders and created space to strike, but did not direct his shot.
SuperSport attempted to double their advantage through Aubrey Modiba’s attack down the left wing that resulted to a corner, but goalkeeper Allenton Sembeh came out and cleared his line.
BYC did not allow the one goal deficit to slow their play, and kept possessing the ball and later got the equalizer in the 26th minute after striker Randy Dukuly who replaced injured skipper Van-Dave Harmon in Coach Cooper Sannah’s side.
Striker Dukuly leveled things up after heading in a cross from left-back Hilton Varney in the roof of the net that gave goalkeeper Ronwen Williams no chance.
In less than ten minutes following the equalizer, BYC were awarded a penalty after defender Keegan Ritchie handed the ball in his penalty area.
The opportunity to put the Go Blue Boys in the lead through right-back Karleo Anderson’s penalty was denied by goalkeeper Williams.
Defender Anderson that Coach Sannah said is one of the team’s best penalty takers did not put enough power in his kick to beat goalkeeper Williams.
Midway through the first half, midfielder Bility was replaced by his teammate Sporo Somah.
Upon the return from the break, SuperSport United stepped up their game by putting BYC’s defense on their back foot through several attempts, but could not increase their goal.
On the other hand, BYC in search for a winning goal came close to score through striker Dukuly and left-back Varney’s left foot strike from about 20 yards that was punched away from goal by goalkeeper Williams.
Late in the 83rd minute forward Prince Saydee who kept causing trouble in his opponents’ defense from the start of the match had a one-on-one opportunity to secure the win for his side, but goalkeeper Williams became the man of the moment after he saved his side from conceding the late goal.
BYC will travel to South Africa this week to play the return leg of the playoff match and many fans were not confident the Go Blue Boys could earn a chance to go forward in the tournament.