George Odhiambo of Kenyan club Gor Mahia (R) vies for the ball with Sameh Derbali (L) of Tunisian club Esperance during the CAF Champions League first round match between Gor Mahia and Esperance Tunis, in Machakos, Kenya, 07 March 2018. EPA/DANIEL IRUNGU
Monday Jul 16, 2018. 09:51
Esperance de Tunis will target another big home win in the CAF Champions League when they host KCCA at the Olympic Stadium in Rades on Tuesday, July 17, kick-off at 21h00 CAT.
The Tunisian giants top Group A in the competition with four points, three of which arrived in their last game as hosts, when they crushed Botswana’s Township Rollers 4-1 in the middle of May – before the tournament went on recess for the 2018 World Cup.
The ‘Blood and Gold’ have also recorded a goalless draw away to Egyptian heavyweights Al Ahly, and will be targeting a victory in this clash to put themselves in a great position to secure a place in the quarterfinals.
Uganda’s Kampala City are placed third on the log with three points. They were narrowly beaten in Gaborone by Rollers to open their debut group stage campaign, before picking up a famous 2-0 home win over the Egyptian side with late goals from Ibrahim Juma and Timothy Awany.
Esperance coach Khaled Ben Yahia will be pleased to have Taha Yassine Khenissi and Ghaylen Chaâlali back in the fold, while Ali Machani remains unavailable but close to returning from injury.
KCCA coach Mike Mutebi has promised that his side will not be intimidated by playing in Rades and says they intend to attack Esperance.
“Gone are the days when we got scared ahead of a clash with North Africans, we are now confident we can always pick positive results against them,” explained the KCCA coach, as quoted by PML Daily.
“We have made very good preparations and the players are confident, especially after that win against Al Ahly at Namboole.
“We also learnt a lot from our loss in Tunis last season because we were not out played but we didn’t have the belief we could pick up a desired result.
“We are going to play to win the game and not just sitting back and let them come at us.
“We will play our way and let them react, the same way we approached the game against Township Rollers in Botswana.
“But we must be more organised if we are to get the desired result while not scrapping our philosophy.”
Moroccan referee Noureddine El Jafaari will take charge of the game in Rades, while the other clash in the group sees Al Ahly host Rollers in Alexandria at 21h00 CAT.