K.O 21:00 Cairo local time | 15:00 ET Canada-USA
Venue: Al-Ahly Stadium, Cairo
Referee: Bamlak Tessema Weyesa
Defending champions Al Ahly take on Algerian side ES Setif.
Title-holders Al Ahly of Egypt haven’t had the most spectacular run in the Champions League this season, but have nonetheless got the job done in their bid to win a historic third consecutive title.
They finished second in their group and squeezed through into the quarters with a 3-2 aggregate win over Raja Club Athletic.
AHly have a good record playing the semis, as they have won 11 of their 12 matches in the last four stage. Their only semi-final blemis was in the 2010 season when they were defeated by Tunisia’s Esperance.
This will be the fourth continental meeting between the two sides and Setif boats of a slight edge, having won two and drawn one of those games while Ahly have won once.
Their last meeting was in the 2018 season at this same stage of the competition, with Ahly edging out a close 3-2 aggregate victory, progressing to the final where they lost to Esperance.
In that match, Ahly won the first leg 2-0 in Cairo with goals from Walid Soliman and Eslam Mohareb while in the return tie Setif won 2-1, their goals scored by Mohamed Islam Bakir and Houssam Eddine Ghacha. Soliman scored Ahly’s important away goal.
No club are better equipped to deal with semi-final pressure than Ahly, who have won 13 of 24 penultimate-stage matches, drawn seven and lost just four.
Setif are meanwhile looking to upset the odds especially since the arrival of their new coach Darko Novic. Novic faced Ahly in the 2007 season as he was an assistant coach Libyan club Al Ittihad when they lost against Ahly, also in the semis.
Novic is the third coach used by two-time African champions Setif this season after Tunisian Nabil Kouki, axed following a group loss to AmaZulu in South Africa, and Algerian caretaker Redha Bendris.