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Al Ahly, TP Mazembe, others clash in CAF Club semifinals

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[FILES] TP Mazembe players celebrate with the trophy their victory in the final football match of the CAF Confederation trophy at Lucas Moripe stadium in Atteridgeville on November 25, 2017 in Pretoria. PHILL MAGAKOE / AFP

The semi-final berths in both the CAF Champions League and CAF Confederation Cup will be decided this weekend, with eight second-leg matches to be played across the continent.

DStv will bring action from the premier club football on the African continent.

The Champions League is on deck for tomorrow, starting in Lubumbashi in DR Congo where TP Mazembe will host Tanzania’s Simba SC. The first-leg ended 0-0 in Dar es Salaam last weekend, giving the Ravens the advantage as hosts for this deciding afternoon clash.

However, Wekundu wa Msimbazi will know that any score draw will favour them on the away goals rule.

The action moves to Suez in the early evening, where Al Ahly has the monumental task of trying to overturn a 0-5 deficit against South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns.

The Red Devils look unlikely to pull off the miracle, and it could end the tenure of Uruguayan coach Martin Lasarte, who was moved to issue an apology to the club’s fans at the end of the first leg in Tshwane.

Two-night games from North Africa wrap up the quarterfinals. In Rades, Tunisia’s Esperance de Tunis (the competition title holders) will be confident of sealing progression against Algeria’s CS Constantine. The Blood and Gold won 3-2 away in the first leg thanks to goals from Youcef Belaili, Fousseny Coulibaly and Mohamed Ali Yacoubi, and overall victory seems inevitability for the hosts at the Olympic Stadium.

Things are much more evenly balanced ahead of the clash between Morocco’s Wydad Casablanca and Guinea upstarts Horoya AC at Prince Moulay Abdellah Stadium in Rabat. The first leg in Conakry ended 0-0, leaving WAC in danger of losing out on the away goals rule should the game end in a score draw.

Sunday sees the focus switch to the CAF Confederation Cup, where the action begins with an afternoon match in Omdurman, as Sudanese giants Al Hilal look to overturn a 3-1 deficit to four-time champions Etoile du Sahel.

With Yassine Chikhaoui in fine form for the Tunisians (he netted two goals in the first leg) it will be an uphill battle for the Blue Wave to triumph.


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