By Beng Emmanuel
Substitute Njiepnang Stephane Ikpeme scored a dramatic late header as Fovu Club of Baham came from behind to draw 2-2 against Petro Atletico of Luanda in their first appearance at the CAF Champions League after 21 years.
The Cameroonian side took control of the tie when Alexandre Nsangue powered the host with a superb low drive to the far corner. But two well- crafted goals from skipper Tiago Leal and Jaredi Lopes handed the Angolans a first half lead at the Ahmadou Ahidjou Stadium.
The visitors were almost certain of grabbing all three points from the clash until Njiepnang Ikpeme came off the bench,rose highest to net the equalizer from a thumping header few minutes to stoppage time.
Fovu Club needed just 11 minutes to break the deadlock which came after several missed chances. Djacba Garhagne who enjoyed a remarkable first half despite reduced to chase balls upfront strangely failed to tap-in an inviting cross.
But his teammate Alexandre Nsangue made amends before their home crown minutes later when he powered in a fine low drive beyond goalkeeper Signori Dominique.
But Fovu’s hard earned lead did not last for too long. Only 10 minutes later, the conceded through a corner kick when Petro Atletico of Luanda skipper’s Tiago Leal tricked the defense to head home the equalizer. The Angolans continued to chase for the lead and got rewarded through a prolific partnership from their front three.
The patient build-up which completely torn apart the defense of the Cameroonian flag bearers was capped-off with a sensational striker from Jaredi Lopes to earn the lead at the break.
Fovu Club’s second half display showed signs of amelioration although they couldn’t conjure some crucial accurate passes and clinical finishes.
Palis Dzomene Dongmo frequently produced some flashes of brilliance from the right for Fovu and came close to put both teams on equal terms. His first attempt from the outside of his boots went slightly off target while his second came off the post.
Despite their setbacks, Fovu Club continued to fight for a late equalizer. They finally got the the much needed goal during stoppage time when Njiepnang Ikpeme headed home to spark waves of excitement from fans.
Sunday’s draw was a remake of FOVU clubs first game at the CAF Champions League in 2001 when they lost on aggregate 5-4 to Petro Atletico in the first round.
They drew the first leg 2-2 and lost the second leg by 3-2.
Fovu Club of Baham will face Petro of Luanda in the return leg preliminary of the CAF Champions League on Saturday the 18th of September in Angola.
The winner of the clash will qualify for the next round of the preliminaries.
Fovu Club 2-2 Petro Athletico
[AlexandreNsangue 11′, Stephane Ikpeme 90+4′]/ [Tiago Leal 20′ and Jaredi Lopes 40+3′]