18 March 2019

Africa: Etoile Edge Salitas for a Seat At the Final 8

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A 1-0 victory in sousse, Sunday, was enough to guarantee Etoile a seat at the quarter finals.

With their spot at risk, Etoile were in no position to waste any time. Just 6 minutes into the game, Wajdi Kechrida infiltrated the right wing and finished off with a cross that found Firas Bel Arbi to break Salitas' deadlock with a spot-on header.

Ilasse Sawadogo made the first attempt for Salitas at the half hour mark but his shot was too weak to cause any trouble for Etoile Goalkeeper, Walid Kriden.

3 minutes later, the woodwork denied Firas Bel Arbi the chance to make it 2 for 2 for Etoile.

2 minutes later, Etoile legend, Yassine Chikhaoui, took a shot at scoring from short range but his shot was deflected by Oula Abass Traore.

Etoile were throwing all their might at Salitas at this point. At the 39 minutes mark, Chikhaoui tries his luck with a header this time but Ismael Bande denied him the pleasure.

Salitas returned from the break eager to turn things around. Shortly after the 2nd half started, Oula Abass Traore tried with a long shot but was deflected by Etoile defenders.

53 minutes into the game, Yassine Chikhaoui found himself head to head with Daouda Diakite but Chikhaoui's miscalculations saw his shot going too high.

Ten minutes before time, Hazem Haj Hassen failed to widen the gap when his shot was saved by Daouda Diakite.

The 1-0 victory was more than enough to send Etoile to the quarter finals of the CAF Confederation Cup.

Etoile Finished 2nd with 10 points, 2 points behind fellow Tunisians, CS Sfaxien.

Reactions

Roger Lemerre (Head Coach, Etoile du Sahel)

" It's a big relief. We were very concerned by Salitas especially after they held us to a draw on their pitch. 3 teams were competing for the 2nd place, I'm thankful we maneged to secure our spot. It was a great experience playing against Salitas and I'm satisfied with our qualification."

Maher Hannachi (Midfielder, Etoile du Sahel)

"I wouldn't call it a difficult qualification. We created many opportunities today and the most important thing is the victory and the qualification."

Ladji Coulibaly (Head Coach, Etoile du Sahel)

"Etoile is a very good team, they played very well today. We saw a different team than the one we faced earlier. It's normal since they were playing at home. They had the experience which helped them score early. We tried to keep up and equalise the score but failed. We take an important lesson from this game to help us get better next year."

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