Seychelles' Lightstars lose 3-0 to South Africa team in CAF Confederation Cup
Seychelles' football club Lightstars suffered a 3-0 defeat against Bidvest Wits from South Africa in their first match of the Confederation Cup on Saturday at Amitie Stadium on Praslin. (Glenn Harper/Flickr) Photo License: (CC BY-SA 2.0)
(Seychelles News Agency) - Seychelles' football club Lightstars suffered a 3-0 defeat against Bidvest Wits from South Africa in their first match of the Confederation Cup on Saturday at Amitie Stadium on Praslin.
Playing for the first time in a Confederation of African Football (CAF) competition, the Lightstars were dominated by Bidvest in the first half, and conceded two goals.
Dillon Sheppard gave the visitors their first goal after 7 minutes and Subisio Vilakazi added a second 18 minutes later, making it 2-0 at the break.
The Lightstars gave a better performance in the second half, but could not stop the South African team scoring a third goal courtesy of Marcus Lecki.
Speaking to SNA after the match, Lightstars’ coach James Barra said his team played quite well and could have done much better had they not showed too much respect for the team during the match.
“We gave the team too much respect when playing and did not close the gaps to stop them circulating the ball too much and attacking us,” said Barra.
The Seychelles coach added that the fact that Bidvest is in full season and his team is not also played a role. The football season in Seychelles, a group of islands in the western Indian Ocean, is off from December to March.
“Their fitness level and physical condition were better than for us," Barra said. "If we were playing every week we would have played better, but that is not an excuse because we know that our season is such and we should have been ready.”
Lightstars had six weeks of preparation for the match.
Coach Barra said his team played a lot better in the second half after they closed the gaps and did not give Bidvest too much space.
A local football analyst at the match, Ulric Mathiot, told SNA that Bidvest is one of the best teams from South Africa and being in full season gave them an advantage. Mathiot added that Lightstars is in the competition for the first time and not only lacked experience when facing a team like Bidvest but was in poor physical condition.
“Experience plays a great role in a match like this one, and being off season made it a difficult match for our team,” said Mathiot.
The Lightstars will face Bidvest for the return match in South Africa on February 27.
With a 0-3 disadvantage, coach Barra said the match will be more difficult but they are looking again at their playing tactics and hopefully will come out with a better result.