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Kaizer Chiefs Hang On With Nine Men To Beat Wydad Casablanca

Kaizer Chiefs hung on for a valuable 1-0 victory over Wydad Casablanca despite finishing a rip-roaring Africa Champions League contest with nine men at FNB Stadium on Saturday.

The win gave Garvin Hunt’s charges hopes of making to the quarter-finals as they have reduced their gap with already qualified Wydad to two points.

The Amakhosi were reduced to ten men in the first half when Daniel Akpeyi saw red for handling outside the area, with Itumeleng Khune entering and Manyama removed.

They were then reduced to nine-men after Samir Nurkovic got a second booking in the last minute of regulation time and was sent off.

Kaizer Chiefs started positively with the first chance on goal coming in the seventh minute when Bernard Parker was played through on goal, but he was denied in a one-on-one with goalkeeper Issa Sioudi.

Wydad, who struggled early on, started finding their feet and almost took the lead in the 20th minute when Zouhair Moutaraji unleashed a powerful long-range shot, but saw his effort superbly saved by Daniel Akpeyi.

Wydad continued to push forward and came close to finding the back of the net again in the 34th minute when Michael Babatunde met a right-wing cross into the box, but his header shaved the wrong side of the post as they went into the break goalless.

The home side sustained the pressure at the start of the second half and managed to take the lead in the 48th minute when Bernard Parker produced a clinical finish to make it 1-0.

Samir Nurkovic almost doubled Chiefs’ lead in the 74th minute but he saw his 24-yard shot sail inches wide of the target.

Wydad tried to find their way back into the game and came close to leveling matters in the 85th minute when Bilal Ziani met a cross into the box, but he saw his ten-yard header well-saved by the keeper.

The Green Eagles threw players forward in search of an equalizing goal in the final five minutes but were unable to penetrate the Amakhosi defence as the match ended 1-0 in favour of the latter.

Kaizer Chiefs did however remain third e in Group C after Horoya beat Petro de Luanda by a similar margin to remain ahead of Amakhosi on goal difference.

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