Orlando Pirates co-coach Mandla Ncikazi has discussed Richard Ofori’s heroics in his side’s 4-3 penalty shootout win over Simba SC on Sunday.
The Buccaneers qualified for the semi-final of the CAF Confederations Cup after eliminating Tanzanian giants Simba via penalties, having cancelled out Simba’s 1-0 first-leg lead in the 90 minutes thanks to a goal by Kwame Peprah.
In the shootout, Deon Hotto, Gabadinho Mhango and Tshegofatso Mabaso stepped up and converted the first three spot kicks for the Sea Robbers, while Simba missed two of their first three.
However, after a miss by Kabelo Dlamini and two converted penalties by Simba, the pressure was on Pirates’ final penalty taker.
At first, it looked like Thembinkosi Lorch would step up but then goalkeeper Ofori took the reigns and converted his penalty – much to the celebrations of his teammates and the fans at Orlando Stadium.
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Ncikazi commended his goalkeeper after the game, suggesting that maybe he should’ve take more penalties in the past already.
“If I had a chance, Ofori would be the first one to take a penalty,” he told reporters.
“He is a good penalty taker. I’ve never seen him [miss] in all my history. I’m even thinking of other penalty shootouts we didn’t win, if he took one maybe it would’ve been different, in hindsight.
“He’s a good penalty taker.”
Pirates will now face Libyan side Al Ahli Tripoli in the semi-final of the competition after they eliminated local rivals Al Ittihad, who had finished in second place in Pirates group.