Orlando Pirates shot-stopper Richard Ofori proved to be the difference as the Buccaneers managed to overcome a tough Simba SC to progress to the CAF Confederations Cup semi-finals.
Pirates will face Al Ahly Tripoli in the semi-finals next month thanks to the heroics of Ofori, who finally delivered when Bucs needed him most.
The Ghost, as Pirates fans are affectionately known, haven’t really seen the best of the Ghanaian since his switch from Maritzburg United in 2020, with injuries and a lack of form curtailing his progress at the Soweto giants.
It was only recently that 28-year-old returned to the starting XI for Pirates, replacing veteran Siyabonga Mpontshane who had been holding down the forte in his absence this season.
However, on Sunday evening, Ofori proved why the Buccaneers signed him in the first place as he came up trumps in the penalty shootout after the match ended 1-1 on aggregate despite Pirates winning 1-0 on the day.
Despite not having much to do in 90 minutes with the visitors failing to register a single shot on target, Ofori saved the opening spot kick to deny Jonas Mkude from 12 yards out, before converting the last penalty to ensure a 4-3 win over the Tanzanian outfit.
After the match, Ofori was full of praise for his teammates and shared a special thank you to the club’s supporters who were in full voice at the Orlando Stadium.
“The game was very tough, we had a good game from the start until the end. We thank the fans for their amazing support since day one. Since they opened the stadium for the supporters, they have been supporting us from home until the stadium. So this is a very important win for the country, for the fans and for our families,” he told the club’s media department.
View the action from Sunday’s match: