Free State Stars 0-0 Mukura Victory Sports: Ea Lla Koto held at home in Caf Confed Cup debut
Ea Lla Koto were frustrated by a stubborn Rwandan side in their debut appearance in the continental club tournament

Free State Stars were held 0-0 draw by Mukura Victory Sports in the 2018/19 Caf Confederation Cup preliminary round first-leg match at the Bidvest Stadium on Wednesday. 

Ea Lla Koto were looking to put aside their Premier Soccer League (PSL) struggles and secure a win in their maiden appearance in the Confederation Cup.

This was Stars' first game since the departure of Belgian coach Luc Eymael and the team was now under the guidance of caretaker coaches David Vilakazi and Sly Mosala.

Their visitors were keen to carry their domestic form into their Confederation Cup campaign having won four of their last five Rwandan National Football League matches.

Mukura head coach Christian Francis Haringingo had made it clear that he was confident that his side would secure an away victory against Ea Lla Koto. 

Stars were forced to host Mukura at the Bidvest Stadium in Johannesburg as their home ground, Goble Park in Bethlehem did not comply with Caf rules.

The visitors nearly grabbed an early goal after the Ea Lla Koto defence was exposed just 15 minutes into the encounter.

Onesme Twizerimana rounded Stars goalkeeper Badra Ali Sangare, but the striker hit the side-netting and the hosts survived a scare.

Ea Lla Koto were struggling to create chances for their main striker Eleazar Rodgers, who was hoping to score his first goal for the club.

Stars, who won last season's Nedbank Cup, and Mukura were locked at 0-0 at the interval following a tightly contested first half.

A relatively quiet second half in Braamfontein followed as Ea Lla Koto and their visitors struggled to keep possession in the final third.

There chances were very few and far between, even though the hosts pushed for a late winning goal in the closing stages of the encounter.

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Ultimately, the match ended in a 0-0 draw with Mukura, who won this year's Rwandan Cup, having contained Stars in the dying minutes of the game.

The second-leg encounter will be played at the Stade Huye in the city of Butare next week Wednesday. 

The winner on aggregate will take on Sudanese club Al-Hilal Al-Ubayyid in the first round tie.

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