Enyimba rue missed opportunities against Zamalek
Sundowns eye Peoples Elephant’s scalp
Enyimba Coach, Paul Aigbogun, is a sad man. The former Warri Wolves’ manager, whose wards lost 0-1 to visiting Zamalek of Egypt in their opening game of the CAF Champions League group stage, is disappointed that his team lost an opportunity to begin their campaign on a winning note.
Speaking after his team lost to Zamalek in an atrociously waterlogged Adokie Aimiesiamaka Stadium, Port Harcourt, on Sunday, Aigbogun said Enyimba had the chances to win the game comfortably but they could not utilize any of them. The pitch conditions did not help matters as it hampered his team’s game plan, he added.
“We feel disappointed at the result, but not the overall performance,” Aigbogun said.“The weather made it a tough game for both sides. It is hard to say if the match should’ve gone ahead or not as I’m not sure of the factors they (officials) took into account,” he said.
He added that Enyimba have not given up their quest to win a third title, adding that losing the first game would now give them more reasons to fight harder in the next five matches.
“We dominated at least 80 per cent of the game. But in football‚ you can dominate without putting the ball in the net. We have taken a lot of positive points from the game.
“Zamalek is not a bad team and I think the goal they scored‚ was a mistake by us. We will go back and plan. All the players are down‚ but full of confidence and I am proud of the players‚ just unfortunate‚ we could not score‚” Aigbogun said.
While Aigbogun is counting the cost of Enyimba’s loss, Zamalek coach, Mohamed Helmy, says his wards played according to instructions in the Group B game despite the harsh conditions.
Bassem Morsy’s goal in the seventh minute gave the Egyptian team, who defended stoutly after the strike, the win.
“The players carried out the game plan perfectly, so I congratulate and thank them, because they played like men,” Helmy said.
“Zamalek fought in the match while playing in abnormal conditions, in which any other team would have opposed.”
Meanwhile, Group B leaders, Mamelodi Sundowns, who unexpectedly beat Entente Setif of Algeria 2-0 away from home, want to consolidate the lead by beating Enyimba in their second group game in 10 days’ time.
According to reports from South Africa, Coach Pitso Mosimane wants to add a second win to their unexpected 2-0 triumph over the Algerian team.Sundowns will host Enyimba on Wednesday‚ June 29 by 7.00 p.m.“Beating Enyimba will put us nearer qualification for the semifinals and that is what we want to do,” Mosimane said.