Pune FC’s maiden AFC Cup campaign has been disappointing as they have been eliminated from the group stage with a game to spare. The Red Lizards have managed just three points from their five matches with their latest fixture ending in a 3-3 draw away from home against Myanmar’s Nay Pyi Taw FC.
It was a game where Pune led twice while club captain Douhoue Pierre failed to convert from the spot and also squandered a great opportunity in second-half stoppage time. Pune coach Mike Snoei praised his players for their effort but rued those missed chances.
“It was an exciting game, because of the score; 3-3. One moment in the second half, I thought we are going to win this game. Then suddenly, the opponent came back. Of course, we made a small mistake at the back, but I really thought that we are going to win this game. We missed a few fantastic chances… and also at the end in the 93rd minute. Yes, we should have scored and finished it… The boys would have rewarded themselves. They worked so hard till the end and would earn the reward winning 3-4.
“So, in one way I am disappointed, but on the other hand I am very happy with the mentality of the team today,” Snoei was quoted saying in Pune’s official website.
Pune’s final game against group winners Kitchee on April 22 is inconsequential and Snoei lamented the fact that his side couldn’t keep their round of 16 hopes alive going into matchday six.
“It is not good. We (Pune FC), had a small chance, but that was only if we won today. A draw means nothing. As I said before we had a small chance with Kitchee, the No 1 side on the table, who was playing at Pune in our last match, but all results needed to be in our favour. There was a small chance of ending number two, but now it is not possible. That is why we were disappointed in the 93rd minute because the miss cost us three points,” Snoei concluded.Published 10 Apr 2014, 23:15 IST