The Ethiopian side St. George beat the visiting Egyptian side ENPPI 2-0 in the first leg of the Orange CAF Confederation Cup play off on Sunday at the Addis Ababa stadium.
St. GeorgeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Shimeles Bekele scored the opener at the 4thÃ‚Â minute while Abebaw Butako made it 2-0 after collecting a corner kick in the 26thminute.
The local fans saluted their teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s win but now St George will have to go to Egypt in a fortnightÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s time and try and avoid a loss by two goals or more if they are to reach the group stage of the competition. The visiting side played offensive football once they went 2- nil down in an attempt to reduce the arrears.
Showing little signs of any effects of the Addis Ababa high altitude, ENPPIÃ‚Â displayed someÃ‚Â well co-ordinated play and took the game to their opponentsÃ‚Â butÃ‚Â St. George weathered the storm and put home advantage to full use. St. George Coach Michael Kruger admitted that the visiting sides was strong and had played well. After the match he said to Cafonline.com , Ã¢â‚¬Å“Of course the 2-0 win is very important. We have now built the confidence to go forward and put heavy pressure on our opponents. I am hopeful that my boys will defend this result in the return match,Ã¢â‚¬Â the head coach said.
St. GeorgeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Shimeles Bekele is also confident to go through to the group stages of the tournament after the 2-0 win. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We are inÃ‚Â a good position to make it through to the group stage and we will take some lessons from our debacle in the decisive match against Zamalek in the Champions League and hopefully this time round we will succeeded in getting a 2-0 advantage over ENPPI pay dividends. Defensive play cost us the previous game,Ã¢â‚¬Â Bekele who scored one of the goals said.
ENPPI Coach Tarek El Ashry said that he is disappointed by the result but added that it is possible to reverse the result in the return match.