African Confederation Cup: Zamalek And Zesco United Reach Group Phase


Egyptian giants Zamalek booked their place in the group phase of the African Confederation Cup after a 3-1 victory over Morocco’s Ittihad Tanger in Alexandria in their play-off match.

Amongst the other teams to advance on Saturday were Zambia’s Zesco United who knocked out Kaizer Chiefs of South Africa and Angolans Petro Atletico who defeated Mali’s Stade Malien.

There are eight more play-off second leg fixtures on Sunday as teams attempt to make the group phase of Africa’s second tier club competition.

After a goalless first leg in Morocco, Zamalek were under some pressure in the second leg of their tie against Ittihad Tanger in Egypt.

Ibrahim Hassan put the Cairo outfit ahead on the stroke of half-time only for Nouaman Aarab to level the score for Ittihad on 50 minutes.

Omar el Said then volleyed the Egyptians back in front just a few minutes later.

The tense north African showdown was not decided until five minutes from time when Youssef Ibrahim struck a third goal for Zamalek to earn them a 3-1 aggregate victory.

The much anticipated clash of Kaizer Chiefs from South Africa and Zambian side Zesco United in Soweto proved a disappointment with the visitors winning 2-1 for a 5-2 aggregate triumph.

A mistake from Namibian goalkeeper Virgil Vries gifted Anthony Akumu an early goal for Zesco and another Kenyan, Jesse Were, doubled the lead midway through the second half.

Chiefs, who had entered the match confident of overcoming a 3-1 first-leg loss, had to wait until stoppage time before Zimbabwean Khama Billiat claimed a consolation goal.

Burkina Faso will be represented in the group phase after Academy side Salitas enjoyed a 3-1 victory over Libyan visitors Al Nasr in Ouagadougou.

Trailing 1-0 from the first leg, Salitas led 2-0 at half-time and an early second-half goal by Ilias Sawadogo stretched the advantage before Emmanuel Azubuike reduced arrears.

In Luanda, Angola’s Petro Atletico defeated Stade Malien of Mali 2-1 to go through 3-2 overall after a 1-1 first leg draw, and Sudan’s Al Hilal also progressed despite losing 1-0 away to Rwanda’s Mukura Victory. Hilal won 3-1 on aggregate.

Also through, Renaissance Berkane of Morocco who trounced ASC Jaraaf of Senegal 5-1 at home in their play-off second leg.

Renaissance qualified 5-3 on aggregate for a second successive appearance in the group phase.

Jaraaf, who led 2-0 from the first leg, defended that advantage for 26 minutes and then conceded twice within three minutes as Burkinabe Alain Traore and Togolese Kodjo Fo-Doh Laba netted.

Hamdi Laachir made it 3-0 on the night and 3-2 on aggregate for Berkane by scoring five minutes before half-time.

Jaraaf pulled one goal back in the opening minute of the second half only for Laba to score his second goal of the match before another Burkinabe, Issoufou Dayo, completed the rout.

Also on Saturday, Hassania Agadir hammered Jimma Aba Jifar of Ethiopia 4-0 to ensure Morocco will have at least two teams in the 16-club group draw on Monday in Cairo.

Leading 1-0 from the first leg in Addis Ababa, Hassania needed only 18 minutes to open the scoring at home through Yassine Rami and the other three goals came during the second half.

Trophy-holders Raja Casablanca are expected to increase the Moroccan representation in the draw to three clubs on Sunday after drawing 1-1 away to African Stars of Namibia last weekend.

Eric Mutema
Staff journalist based in Nairobi, Kenya. Eric is a Journalism graduate from Shang Tao Media Arts College and is passionate about technology and science fiction writing.