africa’s heavyweights chase quarterfinal berths

07:30    08 Mar 2019

Hlompho Kekana of Mamelodi Sundowns
Some of Africa’s ‘heavyweight’ clubs, such as TP Mazembe and Esperance de Tunis, will be chasing quarterfinal berths in Matchday 5 of the 2018/19 CAF Champions League in the next two days.

Friday’s opening action in the early evening sees CS Constantine needing only to avoid defeat at home to Club African to secure progression from Group C, while TP Mazembe can also end the hopes of Ismaily (who have been ejected and re-instated in the premier competition) by avoiding defeat behind closed doors in Alexandria.

Friday’s night games come from Group B, with a Southern African derby between Orlando Pirates and already-eliminated FC Platinum of Zimbabwe in Soweto, while title holders Esperance de Tunis could potentially seal a quarterfinal place with a win at home to Horoya in Rades.

Saturday is a key time in Group A, with co-leaders Wydad Casablanca and Mamelodi Sundowns facing testing matches away to ASEC Mimosas in Abidjan and at home to Nigeria’s Lobi Stars respectively. South Africa’s Sundowns will be itching for revenge against Stars after suffering a 2-1 defeat in Enugu back in January.

Group D sees just three points covering the four teams, with bottom-of-the-log AS Vita hoping to bring themselves right back into the mix by defeating leaders Al Ahly in Kinshasa, while JS Saoura of Algeria host Tanzania’s Simba SC in Bechar and will be looking to avenge a Matchday 1 3-0 loss in Dar es Salaam.

CAF Champions League fixtures, 8-9 March

All times CAT

Friday 8 March

18:00: CS Constantine v Club Africain

18:00: Ismaily v TP Mazembe

21:00: Esperance de Tunis v Horoya AC

21:00: Orlando Pirates v FC Platinum

Saturday 9 March

18:00: ASEC Mimosas v Wydad Casablanca

18:00: AS Vita v Al Ahly

21:00: Mamelodi Sundowns v Lobi Stars

21:00: JS Saoura v Simba SC

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