22 July 2012

Ghana/Congo-Kinshasa: Clottey Powers Chelsea to Hold Mazembe

Striker Emmanuel Clottey scored a brace as Ghana's Berekum Chelsea held TP Mazembe of DR Congo to a 2-2 draw in their Group B Orange CAF Champions League clash on Sunday in Lubumbashi.

Clottey netted twice in the second half to take his tally to eleven in the premier continental club championship this term as his side rallied back after going down by two goals in the first half.

The feat maintains the impressive run of the Ghanaian representatives, who saw off Egyptian giants Zamalek 3-2 in their opening game at the group phase a fortnight ago in Accra.

Needing a win to boost to their chances in the group, TP Mazembe got off to a bright start, pinning the visitors to their half of the pitch. It was only matter of time that the opener would come and on 10 minutes, captain Tresor Mputu Mabi broke the deadlock firing past goalkeeper Ernest Sowah from close range to send the pack crowd at the Frederic Kibassa Maliba Stadium into a partying mood.

Few minutes later, the crossbar denied Mazembe of the second goal after Zambia-import Rainford Kalaba's effort kissed it with Berekum Chelsea goalie Sowah completely beaten.

On 31 minutes, the second goal finally came again from Mputu from the spot. Defender Edward Kpodo was adjudged to have brought down Mputu in the vital area. But goalkeeper Sowah spilled into play the initial kick from Mputu, before the latter fired home from the rebound.

The Ghanaians resumed more purposeful and five minutes on winger Solomon Asante was unlucky as his low shot went wide as they began drilling holes into the Mazembe backline.

As the clock ticked on, Berekum Chelsea were awarded a penalty on 70 minutes after Mazembe goalie Muteba Kidiaba fouled Clottey in a one-on-one situation. Clottey step up and sent Kidiaba the other way to reduce the deficit for his side.

The debutants fought on and got the needed equalizer six minutes from time thanks to in-form Clottey. The 24-year old striker weaved his way past two Mazembe defenders before curling past goalkeeper Kidiaba to silence the home crowd.

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