Thursday,19 July, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1287, (17 - 23 March 2016)
Thursday,19 July, 2018
Issue 1287, (17 - 23 March 2016)

Ahram Weekly

Top is tripped

Three Egyptian teams won their African club openers while the best had to settle for a draw, Abeer Anwar reports

Al-Ahram Weekly

Egypt’s Maqassa and Enppi won their first leg 32nd round in the CAF Confederation Cup while Zamalek captured a valuable away victory in the opener of the more fancied Champions League. In the same tournament, in the first leg of round 32, Ahly, record holder with most Champions League crowns, tied, also away.

Maqassa soundly defeated their guests Don Bosco of the DR Congo 3-1 in Cairo in the first leg of round 32 of the CAF Confederation Cup.

Maqassa scored twice in the first half through midfielder Amr Barakat and winger Mohamed Gaber.

In the second, Don Bosco tried for the equaliser but could not get past Maqassa’s defence. Striker Nana Poku made it 3-0 before Don Basco scored what could be a vital away goal two minutes before the final. Maqassa will fly to DR Congo to face Don Bosco on 19 March in their second leg match.

Egyptian team ENPPI cruised away from home 2-0 in their CAF Confederation Cup against Africa Sports of Ivory Coast. Guinean striker Lama Koulin scored the first goal 17 minutes from the start. Mahmoud Kaoud scored four minutes later. ENPPI will host Africa Sports on Saturday 19 March in the second leg of the CAF Confederation Cup round of 32.

In other games, Tunisia’s Esperance defeated Renaissance of Chad 2-0   and Algerian side MC Oran beat Sporting Gagnoa of Ivory Coast 2-0.

Zamalek opened their Champions League campaign with a 1-0 away win over Cameroon’s Union Douala in the round of 32 first leg.

Burkina Faso defender Mohamed Koffi struck in the 59th minute to make his team’s mission in the second leg match in Cairo easier against Douala on 19 March. Despite the leadership of their new coach, Scotsman Alex McLeish, Zamalek did not play as a unit, opening too much distance between the players.

Zamalek’s President Mortada Mansour said he was satisfied with the victory and gave bonuses to all the players immediately after the match.

Zamalek’s cross-town rivals Ahly failed to make use of their clear scoring chances in Saturday’s away match against Angolan champions Recreativo de Libolo, finishing the first leg of the CAF Champions League round of 32 with a goalless draw.

The record-holding eight-time CAF Champions League winners, Ahly dominated the first half, but lost the advantage after the break when Recreativo came back strong to threaten their defence and goal.  

Ahly’s new Dutch coach, the famed Martin Jol, was making his debut in African competitions, playing the game with a lone striker and three midfielders to block the playmaking area against the hosts.

The Cairo giants will host Recreativo in the second leg of the CAF Champions League round of 32 on 19 March.

The Red Devils are representing Egypt in the CAF Champions League after placing second in the Egyptian Premier League table last season, behind Zamalek.

In other results, Ugandan representative SC Villa put one foot in the next round thanks to a 4-0 drubbing of JKU of Zanzibar on Saturday in Kampala. The victory takes the Ugandans within sight of a place at the 1/8th round of the second-tier continental club championship.  

 Rwanda champions APR were dealt a huge blow to their continental ambitions, losing 2-1 at home to Tanzanian outfit Young Africans in the first leg of the 1/16th round at Amahoro Stadium.

Mamelodi Sundowns were the only South African club to come out with a positive result at home after a convincing 2-0 victory against AC Leopards of Congo in the Orange CAF Champions League.

There were two other South African clubs, also on continental duty on Saturday, but were unable to emulate the result of their counterparts. Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs suffered their third consecutive loss as Adama Bakayoko’s strike gave visiting ASEC Mimosas of Cote d’Ivoire a crucial away goal.  

Tanzania’s Azam may have well ended Bidvest Wits’ hopes of progressing further in the CAF Confederation Cup after a disappointing 3-0 loss for the Johannesburg based outfit.

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