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TP Mazembe returns to CAF Champions League football a year older and wiser after their disqualification from the 2011 competition.
Mazembe were disqualified from last years edition after fielding an ineligible player in their second round tie against SImba SC of Tanzania whom the DR Congo team from Lubumbashi beat 6-3 on aggregate.
The decision dashed Mazembes the prospects of achieving an unprecedented third successive Champions League title defence.
However, the disqualification has seemingly not knocked any steam out of the Lubumbashi giants who are arrive in the group stage unbeaten with three wins and a draw.
Experienced Coach Lamine Ndiaye will be taking charge of his full first group stage campaign at Mazembe since replacing Diego Garzito in September, 2010 in which the former helped them successfully retain the Champions League crown.
Ndiaye still has veteran striker Tresor Mputu who has so far scored three goals in the competition to inspire them in a tough Group B that includes two fellow former champions.
Goalkeeper Muteba Kidiaba will also be key as Mazembe head into their sixth Champions League group stage where fellow ex-African kings Al Ahly and Zamalek of Egyptian await.
Moreover, Mazembe come armed with a winning formula in the shape of five Zambia's Africa Cup winning team led by midfielder Rainford Kalaba and defender Stophilla Sunzu.
Mazembe's prolific Given Singuluma, who missed the cut for Zambia trip to the 2012 Africa Cup, will be out to impress.
|TP Mazembe||2 - 0||Wydad Casablanca||08 May 11|
|Wydad Casablanca||1 - 0||TP Mazembe||23 Apr 11|
|Simba||2 - 3||TP Mazembe||02 Apr 11||Dar-es-Salaam|
|Click here for Standings||Click here to see the full table|
|2011 CAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE PRELIMINARIES TEAM RECORD|
|LAST 10 HOME:||5||3||2||0||10||3||7||0||0||10|
|LAST 10 AWAY:||5||0||4||1||4||5||0||0||0||4|