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Pirates deliver brave performance but suffer defeat in Libya

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It was perhaps through a lack of luck that Orlando Pirates lost their group match in the Café Confederation Cup at Al Ittihad in Libya on Sunday night.

It wasn’t for lack of effort though, as the Buccaneers put on a brave performance.

They came back twice from a goal to equalize but they couldn’t do it when Al Ittihad chased them for the third time and lost the match 3-2.

While Pirates tried to get some rhythm into the game, Al Ittihad scored the first goal in the 15th minute via a well-hit free kick from Sand Masaud.

Ten minutes later, Pirates tied the score when Bandile Shandu scored with a try from long range. But they were soon behind when Eisay Muad Siyabonga defeated Mpontshane with a long shot.

And when it looked like the home side would go on the brakes with a lead, Shandu ruined it for them again, taking advantage of shoddy defense in the Al Ittihad box to score the equalizing goal just before half-time.

Al Ittihad took the lead again 54 minutes into the game when Alkhja defeated Omar Mpontshane, who had gone off line, with a shot from 35 yards.

After this goal, it was always going to be difficult for Pirates to come back, especially with Al Ittihad players falling all over the place in their efforts to turn back the clock.

Their goalkeeper, Mohammed Abukhres, was shown a yellow card just over five minutes before the end for wasting time. Pirates remains the leader in Group B, despite the loss on points with Al Ittihad.

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