Little-known Madagascan side Fosa Juniors, who held AFC Leopards to a 1-1 draw in their first leg tie of their CAF Confederations Cup preliminary round match, are beaming with confidence a head of the return leg.
Speaking in Kakamega after the encounter on Sunday, Fosa Juniors head Bob Kootwijk revealed how he plotted to cage the Leopards at their own backyard. “I was privileged to study the strengths and the weaknesses of our opponents during their Kenyan Premier League Super Cup against Gor Mahia a few weeks ago which gave us a clear picture of how to approach the match,” said Kootwijk.
“We knew they are physical and dangerous on long balls and we worked and planned on how to counter all these and I am happy the players executed exactly what we told them,” he added, while complimenting his two central defenders Jean Rakotoharisoa and Miantra Dino for keeping Leopards’ strikers at bay.
“The business is not over yet and we know Leopards have experience in these kinds of international championships and they will be working hard to register a good performance away. I want to warn my players not to be carried away with a draw and remain focused for the return leg which will be tough for both teams,” said Kootwijk. The Fosa tactician was also pleased by the hospitality in Kakamega.
“They gave us a warm welcome and nice training facilities, accommodation and transport that fits this international status. We enjoyed our stay in Kakamega,” he added. Leopards will have to beat Fosa or force a draw of more than two goals to go through to the next round while a barren stalemate will be enough for the Madagascans.
Kenyan teams have found continental assignments daunting over the years and many will be hoping that Leopards can go a step further given their pedigree in the country and the region even though their recent struggles are well documented.