CAF Champions League
Record eight-time winners Ahly of Egypt were handed a favorable African Champions League draw after being placed with DR Congo’s Vita Club, Tanzania’s Simba and JS Saoura of Algeria on Friday.
Fellow Egyptian side Ismaily, who are making their first appearance in Africa’s blue-riband competition in eight years, will face much tougher opposition in Group C.
They were drawn with five-time winners TP Mazembe of the DR Congo, Tunisia’s Club Africain and CS Constantine of Algeria. Ismaily was eliminated at the group stage on their previous Champions League appearance in 2010.
Ahly are overwhelming favorites to advance from Group D as they eye their first Champions League triumph since winning the last of their record titles in 2013.
They agonizingly missed out on the prestigious accolade in the past two seasons, falling at the last hurdle after final defeats by Morocco’s Wydad and Tunisia’s Esperance in 2017 and 2018 respectively.
Group A: Lobi Stars, Wydad Casablanca, ASEC Mimosas, Mamelodi Sundowns
Group B: FC Platinum, Orlando Pirates, Horoya AC, Esperance
Group C: Ismaily, CS Constantine, Club Africain, Mazembe
Group D: JS Saoura, Simba, Vita Club, Ahly
Egyptian giants Zamalek, who are eyeing their first Confederation Cup title, will face Moroccan champions Ittihad Tanger in the third round of the competition after the draw was made in Cairo on Friday.
Both sides will meet in a two-legged tie for a place in the group stage of Africa’s secondary club competition.
Tanger were eliminated from the African Champions League’s first round after losing to Algeria’s JS Saoura 2-1 on aggregate.
Zamalek, on the other hand, secured a comprehensive 7-2 aggregate win over Chad’s CotonTchad to advance to the Confederation Cup third round.
The White Knights are the only Egyptian representative left in the competition after Masry were eliminated following a 2-0 aggregate defeat by Burkina Faso’s Salitas earlier this month.
Ahly, Zamalek’s Cairo rivals, are the only Egyptian side to win the Confederation Cup, having lifted the trophy in 2014.