Primeiro Agosto coach Manojlovic blames refereeing for Caf Champions League exit

Despite grabbing two away goals, Agosto were sent packing out of the competition, with the club placing the blame on the officials

Primiero Agosto coach Zoran Manojlovic has descibed their defeat as “a shame” after witnessing his team bow out of the Caf Champions League following a 4-2 semifinal, second leg defeat to Esperance.

Zambian World Cup referee Janny Sikazwe handled the match in Rades as Esperance scored their first goal from the penalty spot, before Agosto had a goal disallowed later on.

Esperance’s winning goal came as scorer Anice Badri appeared to have had infringed an Agosto defender attempting to clear danger and in the process angering Manojlovic.

The Serb felt hard done by the way Sikazwe performed with his whistle as they reeled out of the tournament on a 4-3 aggregate defeat.

“That was a shame” Manojlovic was quoted as saying by Jornal de Angola.

“African football will continue to lag behind the European, South American and Asian (continents). It is not understood how a team can score three goals away from home and is eliminated.”

Arriving in Rades carrying a 1-0 lead from the first leg played three weeks earlier in Luanda, Agosto started the match well by taking the lead through Geraldo.

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But the momentum changed when Sikazwe pointed to the spot after Agosto defender Jose Macaia was adjudged to have fouled Maohamed Belaili inside the penalty box.

When the scoreline was at 3-2, Agosto thought they had grabbed a third away goal but Ungenda had the goal disallowed after Mingo Bille was ruled to have pushed Esperance goalkeeper Rami Jridi.

The Angolan's dissatisfaction with the referee got worse when Esperance delivered the final blow with Badri scoring the fourth goal after what appeared to have been an infringement on his marker who attempted to clear the danger.