Nyasa Big Bullets have made life difficult for themselves after they were held to a goalless draw by FC Platinum of Zimbabwe in CAF Champions League preliminary round first leg yesterday watched Stadium in Blantyre.
It was a game that pitted experience against talent as Bullets boasting of up-and-coming players such as crafty winger Peter Banda, enterprising attacking midfielder Mike Mkwate, Charles Petro, Precious Sambani, Chimwemwe Idana and Nixon Nyasulu, came face to face with an experienced Zimbabwe outfit that is no stranger to Confederation of African Football (CAF) club competitions.
Bullets did everything by the book in search for a goal that could have given them an edge in the away second leg, but the visitors simply packed the defence and rarely went forward in order to frustrate the TNM Super League champions.
Knowing that their opponents were bulky, Bullets had to put the ball on the ground and avoid aerial balls.
But still, there were afew openings for Bullets though they pressed hard, making several incursions into the enemy territory using winger Banda and overlapping defenders Gomezgani Chirwa and Sambani.
Platinum goalkeeper Wallace Magalane scampered to keep out substitute forward Bright Munthali’s long-range drive which hit the post, stood out as the best chance for Bullets.
Bullets assistant coach Peter Mponda said in post-match interview though the result was disappointing, the performance was not bad considering that they did not concede a goal.
“Of course we wanted a win, but performance wise the boys did everything to win this game. Our defence was compact. They did not penetrate us and we created some chances.
“I know the supporters are disappointed that if we didn’t manage to win at home, what about away. But it will be a different game. They will attack us and then hopefully they will open up,” he said.
Platinum assistant coach Lizwe Sweswe said they would wrap up the game in the second leg set for the weekend of August 24 and 25 in Bulawayo.
“We have to score goals in Bulawayo if we are to proceed to the next round. We are going to work on the attacking part of the game,” he said.
He also applauded Bullets for giving the Zimbabwe champions a good game.
“I think they played very well. They can possess the ball. They can pass around. They are tactically good,” he said.
Meanwhile, in Kampala, Uganda Masters Security lost 3-0 to Proline in the first leg of the Confederations Cup.