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02/11/2013 15:00

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Matlaba rescues draw for Orlando Pirates against Al Ahly in the CAF Champions League Final first leg

Posted: 2 November 2013 Time: 19:05

Thabo Matlaba scored in extra time to rescue a point for Orlando Pirates against Al Ahly in the CAF Champions League Final, first leg.

Mohamed Aboutrika opened the scoring on 14 minutes with a great free-kick to hand the visitors the lead.

When it looked as if Pirates would go into the second leg in Egypt a goal down, Thabo Matlaba powered home an equaliser in the 93th minute.

The draw puts Al Ahly in a commanding position ahead of the second leg in Eygpt next Sunday, as they have an away goal in the bag.

Ahly are chasing their eighth Champions League title – and their fifth in nine years.

Pirates were not to be intimidated, however, and started the match brightly, pushing forward from the first minute, but some clumsy defending during an Ahly counter-attack led to the visitors being awarded a free-kick in a very promising area, just outside the penalty box.

And sure enough Aboutrika stepped up and sent the ball just over the heads of the Pirates wall and into the top right corner, leaving Senzo Meyiwa with no chance of stopping it.

It would have been a special moment for Ahly’s 35-year-old playmaker, who announced his intention to retire after the tournament, as he went one step closer to a fifth CAF Champions League medal.

And the Egyptian legend was back in the thick of things in the  51st minute, when he set up Ahmed Abd El-Zaher to hit home from close range, but luckily for the Buccaneers the linesman erroneously ruled him offside.

Ahly were content to sit back and wait for the counter-attack, while Pirates kept up a high-tempo passing game, although they were let down by decision making on the final ball.

On 57 minutes Andile Jali tried a shot from range, but Ahly goalkeeper Sherif Ekramy was up to the challenge and got a strong hand to the ball to palm it away for a corner.

With seconds remaining Matlaba picked up a short pass and bustled his way past the defence, before hitting a fairly tentative shot past Ekrami to send the Orlando Stadium crowd into raptures.

Pirates line-up: Senzo Meyiwa, Happy Jele, Thabo Matlaba, Ayanda Gcaba, Rooi Mahamutsa, Andile Jali, Tlou Segolela, Oupa Manyisa, Lennox Bacela (Collins Mbesuma 82), Daine Klate, Sifiso Myeni (Mpho Makola 76)

Al Ahly line-up: Sherif Ekrami, Sherif Abdel-Fadil, Wael Gomaa, Mohamed Naguib, Sayed Moawad, Ahmed Fathi, Hossam Ashour, Abdallah El-Said (Ahmed Shedid 91), Walid Soliman, Mohamed Aboutrika (Ramy Rabiea 81), Ahmed Abdel-Zaher (Dominique Da Silva 65)

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Livefyre comments on this story...

Pitate All The Way
posted: 2013-11-04 08:18:12

I was @the stadium guys, The referee was a lit bit racist.Thanks to the zebras that supported us,I saw a few of them mix bucs and zebra stuff. I was pleased to see such.

It was nice, just that I ain't feel okay since the lost of my mom is all over my head...From my bucs family, if you know God, please pray for me for strength!!!

I will be out for some days, till we meet again.

Please bucs watchers, watch the zebras not to fart tom cu here, never let them take over, ngizobuya ne missile to destroy them all farting zebras...

bucsBabyBongz at BucsbucsBeauty@king?, CJB Ramses III@Reclaiming the Star,Jim Jones The Pirate,ACL 2nd Star D/Trebble Champs (bafethu I can't finish you all) Sisonke bafethu. And @

The Phefeni Boy AKA Chocolate Box, ungasali usuza ke lah neh!!!! Sho!!!

Pitate All The Way
posted: 2013-11-04 08:19:53

udb I think in the game he should have taken out Segolela, this guy keeps on losing balls,eish!!!

eronrag
posted: 2013-11-04 09:11:11

bucsBeauty eronrag LOL Pirates want the star but they dont have the ability to win in front of their own supporters. 

eronrag
posted: 2013-11-04 09:12:03

nonhle eronrag Lol definitely I will celebrate with Pirates, but rats noise will continue forever. 

bouga2
posted: 2013-11-04 11:20:06

oupa24512532 How many draws and counting

oupa24512532
posted: 2013-11-04 16:34:19

bouga2 oupa24512532 We are at the final now thas all that count

oupa24512532
posted: 2013-11-04 16:41:29

TICOmp oupa24512532 You just wish it was zebra but that level is not for them sorry

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