SuperSport United go down to USM Algiers for second Confed Cup loss in a row

Brahim Benzaza of USM Alger celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal during their Caf Confederation Cup match against SuperSport United

Brahim Benzaza of USM Alger celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal during their Caf Confederation Cup match against SuperSport United at Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane on Sunday. Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Published Dec 3, 2023


Continental football is proving a little too difficult for SuperSport United, who suffered their second defeat of their Caf Confederation Cup campaign when they fell to yet another loss, this time 2-0 to USM Algiers of Algeria at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

Beaten 1-0 by Future FC of Egypt last weekend, Gavin Hunt and his team had every intention of making homeground advantage count in their favour as they looked to grab maximum points and stay in the competition.

But they were no match for the defending champions who opened their account in Group A with a 2-0 home victory against Al Hilal Bhengazi of Libya last weekend. The visitors scored either side of halftime to remain top of the table while leaving the South Africans with what appears an insurmountable task of progressing to the knockout stage.

SuperSport got the worst start imaginable when they conceded as early as the fifth minute when they allowed the Algerians to go ahead with the game just five minutes old.

The home side’s defence failed to clear a corner kick taken from the right side and the ball fell for an unmarked Saadi Radouani and the striker had all the time to smash home a powerful shot that Washington Arubi had no chance of stopping with all the many players in front of him.

On the back-foot so early in the match, SuperSport had to dig deep to try and restore parity but try as hard as they did they just could not breach the visitors’ defensive line.

But they actually almost went 2-0 down just before the half-hour mark when they give the ball away in front of their box but they were fortunate Abdelfateh Belkacemi shot inches wide of Arubi’s goals.

Ten minutes later Shandre Campbell forced a good save out of Ousssama Benbot with a powerful grass-cutting shot and from the resultant corner-kick the USM number one again came to his team’s rescue.

Expectedly, SuperSport returned from the break fired up in search of the equaliser. But they met up with an immovable object in the USMA defence who protected their goals like a mother hen does its chicks.

That done, they then went on to add a second goal just ten minutes into the second half via a spectacular shot from the edge of the box. A USMA attack appeared innocuous as the SuperSport defence seemed to have everything covered. But they then pussy-footed about with the ball, the possession ending up with the unmarked Brahim Benzaza who waited for no second invitation and smashed a thunderbolt which Arubi could do nothing about.

That was the match over as a contest and try as they did, even with a myriad of changes, SuperSport just never looked like finding the opposition net.

Instead it was the visiting team that appeared dangerous whenever they ventured into the SuperSport half of the field.

IOL Sport