USM Alger’s outstanding 5-match winning run in the 2015 CAF Champions League was ended by Al Merreikh in Khartoum on Friday, in their sixth and final Group B outing.
The Sudanese giants sealed a 1-0 victory over the Algerians in front of their home crowd, thanks to a 14th minute winner from Ivoirian striker Didier Lebri Grekou.
USMA striker Mohamed Amine Aoudia came close to put the visitors ahead at the Al Merreikh Stadium after 9 minutes of play, but was denied by Merreikh goalkeeper Omar Jamal Magoola.
And five minutes later, Didier Lebri was on target on his first clear-cut goalscoring opportunity to give the locals the lead.
Rachid Nadji nearly levelled matters in the 37th minute, hitting the woodwork in an offside position.
And Al Merreikh managed to hold onto their narrow advantage until the final whistle, to inflict the first defeat of USMA’s group stage campaign.
However, the Algerians finished top of their group on 15 points, two ahead of second-placed Merreikh with both sides booked in the semifinals of the prestigious tournament.
Al Merreikh: 16-Magoola - 6-Abdalla, 12-Musaab, 21-Amir Kamal, 28-Saied - 29-Agab, 11-Ragei Abdalla - 24-Libéré, 27-Cofie, 19-Jabason, 4-Bakri
USM Alger: 29-Mansouri - 3-Abdellaoui, 5-Mazari, 6-Chafai (c), 25-Benmoussa - 24-Benkhemassa, 28-Baiteche, 7-Ferhat, 9-Andria - 2-Aoudia, 14-Nadji