Addis Ababa, Ethiopia -Ã‚Â Ethiopia cruised to a lone goal victory over visiting Botswana in their 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifier held at the Addis Ababa Stadium on Sunday.
Substitute Getahun Kebede scored two minutes into stoppage time to secure victory and maintain leadership of the group on seven points from three games.
Kebede came on as a substitute after the break replacing Adane Girma. For Botswana, it was their second loss of the campaign and leaves them at the depth of Group A with just a point.
Ethiopia coach Sewnet Bishaw admitted that his side didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t play well all through.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Botswana played much better than we expected. Our performance was not that good but the players fought to the finish to get the most important result at the end,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said.
The trainer did not hide the fact that he was elated for securing the group leadership courtesy the win.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“What is needed most in this qualifiers is a win. Now we have three matches to go. Staying at the top indicates that we are hopeful,” he added.
Match-winner Kebede also observed that scoring at the death gives extraordinary pleasure.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Just minutes from the final whistle, I got a very inviting ball to convert it in to the net. It was a happy moment for me and all Ethiopians,Ã¢â‚¬Â he toldÃ‚Â Cafonline.com.
Botswana Head Coach Stanley Tshosane said that missing points in the last minute is indeed heart breaking.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“My boys played very well up to the 88th minute. We were just close to share a point. Unfortunately, we were forced to concede defeat when the Ethiopian side scored at the end. That is very disappointing,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said.