Plateau United and Kwara United suffered similar fates against Northern African clubs as they were edged via away goal rule
Kwara United and Plateau United, two Nigerian clubs on the continent, were eliminated from their respective tournaments by North African opponents on the basis of the away goals rule on Saturday.
Kwara United suffered a 2-0 second leg defeat to cancel out their first leg 3-1 win over RSB Berkane of Morocco while Plateau United were outwitted by a controversial penalty goal defeat to Esperance of Tunisia.
However, Plateau United have a lifeline, as their defeat meant demotion to play in the Confederations Cup.
The Harmony boys were full of life going to the second leg, having secured a two-goal advantage over Berkane, but all went to dust after Cheick Outtarra’s first half strike and Mehdi Oubaddi’s second half goal drew the Orange boys level on goals.
In the second minute of the game, Adewale Adeyinka was put to test by the hosts but Hamza Regragui’s attempt was saved by the goalkeeper. Three minutes later, Ouattara’s attempt went wide.
Berkane drew the first blood in the 16th minute from Outtarra who tapped-in Issoufou Dayo’s cross.
Just as a goal wasn’t enough for the Orange boys to progress to the next stage, the Moroccan side doubled their lead 10 minutes into the second half from Oubaddi, who benefited from Adeyinka’s error.
Elsewhere, the game that was earlier played between Plateau United and Esperance ended in a sour state for the Peace Boys as they failed to break another Northern African jinx.
The Peace Boys went into the second leg of the preliminaries with a 2-1 advantage and needed a draw to proceed to the group stage of the CAF Champions League.
However, it didn’t go as planned following a controversial penalty awarded by Egyptian referee, Ibrahim El Din after Ifeanyi Emmanuel was punished for an infringement on Ben Hamouda in the 81st minute.
The forward then sent Suraj Ayeleso the wrong two minutes later to score the only goal that made the difference in the encounter.
As it stands, Plateau United will seek redemption in the second tier of the CAF inter-club competition which is the Confederations Cup.