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Enyimba avoids ‘group of death’ in CAF Confederation Cup


Former African champions, Enyimba of Aba, was lucky to avoid some heavyweights in the draw for CAF Confederation Cup group made yesterday, at the African Football Confederation (CAF) headquarters in Cairo, Egypt.

The Peoples Elephant narrowly made it to the group stage of the competition las week courtesy of an away goal advantage against Bidvest Wits FC of South Africa, on a day three other Nigerian clubs, MFM FC of Lagos, Akwa United and Plateau United of Jos crashed out.

In yesterday’s draw in Cairo, Enyimba was pitched in Group C alongside AC Williamsville (Ivory Coast), CARA Brazzaville (Congo) and Djoliba (Mali).

Interestingly, it was Djoliba of Mali that accounted for the exit of one of Nigeria’s representatives, MFM FC, last week. After a 1-0 defeat in the first leg, MFM FC was unable to score in the return leg, which ended 0-0 in Mali.

The first group stage match will take place on Sunday, May 6, while the last group stage match will hold on Sunday, August 29.

However, another former African champions, ASEC of the Ivory Coast, was pitched in what was considered a ‘group of death’ alongside Raja Casablanca of Morocco, V Club of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Aduana Stars of Ghana yesterday. They are in Group A.

Raja has won five CAF competitions, including three Champions League finals, but last lifted an African trophy 15 years ago.

The Moroccans impressed in qualifiers, scoring 10 goals against Nouadhibou of Mauritania and Zanaco of Zambia, and look the team to beat in the African equivalent of the Europa League.

ASEC were crowned champions in 1998 and V Club in 1973, while Aduana are among 11 qualifiers who have secured mini-league places for the first time.

Rayon Sports of Rwanda, Gor Mahia of Kenya and Young Africans of Tanzania, three of the four east African survivors, are in Group D, with USM Alger of Algeria.

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