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Black Leopards’ Tiyani Mabunda says St Eloi Lupopo fans no disruption

Posted: 7 April 2012 Time: 09:54

Black Leopards' Tiyani Mabunda says the St Eloi Lupopo fans blundered when they arrived at Leopards' hotel unannounced a few hours before the match.

Leopards drew 2-2 with their Congolese counterparts in Lubumbashi on Friday winning the tie 6-4 on aggregate to progress to the last 16 of the CAF Confederation Cup.

Earlier in the day, the Lupopo fans startled the Leopards players, who were enjoying breakfast, when they arrived at the Grand Karava hotel in four minibuses and hurled insults at them. Speaking about the incident in a post-match interview, Mabunda tells the Lupopo fans motivated rather than discouraged the Lidoda Duvha players.

“Their supporters came to the hotel where we were staying trying to intimidate us, but we took it in a positive manner. So we didn’t find it intimidating at all and it actually motivated us,” the midfielder says.

“They made a mistake when they did that because that just spurred us on… We are mentally strong,” he says.

As if the hostile crowd wasn’t enough for Leopards to deal with, they had to contend with the referee for the better of the second half.

Romualdo Do Rosario Baltazar from Angola may be familiar to some South Africans as he was in charge of Bafana Bafana’s goalless draw match against Japan in November 2009 in Port Elizabeth.

His officiating in the second half was dubious to say the least with some of his decisions drawing whispers of ‘Haai, haai, haai’ in disagreement in the grandstand especially when he awarded Lupopo an indirect free kick inside the box just after the hour mark in controversial circumstances.

Mabunda comments: “The second half was tough for us because the ref turned against us. I agree the penalty he gave them was legitimate because Moses Kwena handled the ball but the indirect free kick given was dubious because it wasn’t a back pass to the goalkeeper.”

Later on, with approximately 10 minutes of regulation time left with Lupopo leading 2-1 and needing one goal to eliminate Leopards, Omony needed medical attention to his right leg after tearing a muscle and he got an opportunity to chat to Baltazar.

“I asked him, ‘How many minutes left?’ and he said to me, ‘10 minutes, but I’m going to add 10 more minutes after that because you are injured’ but I was treated for just three minutes. Luckily for us the fourth official didn’t seem to get the message right and instead added eight minutes,” he says.

Leopards held their nerve, though, to score an equaliser at the death to break the Lupopo hearts and will now face Nigerian side Warri Wolves at the end of this month.

Tiyani wa ka Mabasa in Lubumbashi courtesy of MTN

Previous comments on this story...

posted: 10:02 am
Well done come back home and finish the business.
Santos and Jomo got to go
posted: 10:52 am
Well done Lidoda Duvha...its not easy to play in those atrocious conditions in Africa.

Keep on flying the Mzantsi flag aloft, we're proud of you!!!

posted: 11:06 am
well done boys but on tuesday its gonna be a different ball game.well done once again.
posted: 11:54 am
I hate u Leopards u just embarass my tim..........but if the ref was so bad why he disagree with linesman to give u a goal???
The Ghost
posted: 01:48 pm
@ !abijan96!?, shut up man, you lost ... either you take it like a man or you just stay away from a South African forum. That's not how we do things in this country.
posted: 02:01 pm
Thats why i hate this people this are african mentally they have to something negative shame. I wish SA can pull out of this DARK continent and leave african with rats minds. From hayatou to little poor st lui lupopo fan. Am sick and Tired of this african people especially from DRC ALL the way through sub-Saharan region to senegal. Shame africa shame. Will I ever like this people no, they so pathetic including their corrupt hayatou and his referees. I dont know why stupid suffer offered to host stupid AFCON anyway.
posted: 03:56 pm
nami i wish we could somehow join European or South American union instead of this trashy continent filled with those uncivilised trash from west,central and north africa. They want us to giv the 5 star treatment yet they treat us like trash at their ghetto countries.
posted: 04:09 pm
Mabunda you very proffessional, judging by your comment . We fans always want success. Go on soldiering you are about to be out of danger position from Psl
posted: 04:27 pm
Well done Black Leopards. I like your play. You play attractive football. You play offensive football, unlike Pirates, Celtic, Golden Arrows. You play to win, not to disturb other teams. Ndiri khari ise phanda nau tamba zwavhudi. Rala warriors ri khou ya kha Group Stages. Let's continue to respect all our opponents seriously.
posted: 01:19 am
Well done leopards.i am sure pirates and their supporters are learning frm you. They got quality players for nothing, i wish you can draw libolo and show pirates wht a diski is.
posted: 09:43 am
Where are we going African, lets learn 2 accept defeat.
posted: 11:00 am
Ey u dms u dumb black leopards r playin in da confederation cup wic is lyk mvela n pirates played caf wic is da real thing gt ur facts ryt b4 u talk a lot abt da mighty buck
posted: 01:45 pm
Avoid relegation then..we re proud of the achievements so far but that will be in vain if get to be relegated
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