Coton Sport have suffered a hat-trick of defeats in Group D of the CAF Champions League after they were beaten 2-1 by hosts Zanaco at the National Heroes Stadium in Lusaka on Saturday afternoon.
The Zambians top the pool on seven points from three games, while Cameroon’s Coton Sport are bottom after suffering a third straight loss.
Fellow Group D rivals and North Africans giants Al Ahly (four points) and Wydad Casablanca (three) will meet in Alexandria tomorrow night.
Zanaco claimed the lead in the seventh minute, with Saith Sakala getting on the end of a fine cross from Richard Kasonde to head the hosts into a 1-0 advantage. The goal arrived after a frantic start in which both teams created early scoring chances.
Coton found themselves under pressure, but against the run of play they claimed an equaliser in the 25th minute, as captain Moussa Souleymanou put a looping header beyond the reach of Zanaco’s goalkeeper to make it 1-1.
Near the end of the first half the Cameroonians almost claimed the advantage through Ronald Wanjah, whose effort was clawed away by a back-pedaling Toaster Nsabata.
The second half saw the teams continue to trade scoring chances, but their finishing repeatedly let them down, with Coton particularly guilty of spurning opportunities when they had only Nsabata to beat.
The match looked destined to end all square, but in the 85th minute Zanaco claimed the lead for the second time when a knockdown from a corner kick by George Chilufya allowed substitute Kitumbo Mpiana to head home from close range and win the game 2-1.
Zanaco and Coton will meet in the return match in the next Matchday, with their clash set for the Roumde Adija Stadium in Garoua on June 21.