Dejected Eric Tinkler admits TP Mazembe experience counted in Confed Cup final
Dejected SuperSport United coach Eric Tinkler admitted that his side were outdone by a more experienced and cup-ready outfit as they failed to wrestle the African Confederation Cup away from Tout Puissant Mazembe at the weekend.
"I don't think it has anything to do with our lack of experience but more with their experience because we are talking about a team that has won many, many competitions, be it the Champions League or the Confederation Cup," Tinkler said in his post-match press conference.
"I think you could see that in terms of the way they played," he added. "You have to give some credit to them.
"Obviously there is a disappointment from everybody. The players understand the hard work it took to get to this stage and obviously there is massive disappointment from them and massive disappointment from me," added Tinkler, who was also a runner-up with Orlando Pirates two years ago.
"We set out on this journey to win it and to finish runners-up can never be a good feeling."
It was third continental title in as many years for the giants from the Democratic Republic of Congo who retain the Confederation Cup with a 2-1 aggregate triumph in the final after the second leg in Pretoria on Saturday night ended goalless.
They were also Champions League winners in 2015.
"I thought they started better than us in the first 10-15 minutes; they pressed us right from the beginning and the players got caught a bit by surprise and they had one or two very good chances in that first 10-15 minute period," Tinkler added.
"I felt after that we started to settle, we started to play and we started to look a little more of a threat going forward," he continued, "but it's about creating the opportunities to score and I don't think we really did that enough over the 90 minutes.
"We had a couple of chances but unfortunately did not put the ball in the back of the net but I felt in that final third of the field we didn't produce enough quality to create those opportunities to obviously get that goal."
Having lost the first leg 2-1 in Lubumbashi, SuperSport needed only win 1-0 to take the trophy on the away goals rule but ended up with just a single shot on target -- the occasion of their first continental cup final getting the better of them.