Saturday Dec 15, 2018. 10:15
The 2018/19 CAF Confederation Cup is in full swing this weekend and we pick the top three matches to follow on Saturday, 15 December 2018.
Etoile du Sahel (Tunisia) v Stade d’Abidjan (Ivory Coast)
Venue: Olympic Stadium, Sousse
Kick-off: 17h00 CAT
Referee: Jean Claude Ishimwe (Rwanda)
Four-time CAF Confederation Cup winners Etoile du Sahel will no doubt be disappointed that they are not in the ‘full fat’ Champions League, but this competition nonetheless presents them with a chance to add to their list of continental titles. They face a tricky opponent in Ivory Coast’s Stade d’Abidjan, who earned their place in the competition by being runners-up in their domestic cup competition, and then edged Mauritanian side Nouakchott Kings on away goals in the preliminary round (after a 2-2 aggregate draw).
Kariobangi Sharks (Kenya) v Asante Kotoko (Ghana)
Venue: Moi Intercontinental Sports Centre, Nairobi
Kick-off: 14h00 CAT
Referee: Pierre Atcho (Gabon)
Asante Kotoko have their place in the current Confederation Cup based on their triumph in the 2017 Ghanaian FA Cup (since the 2018 edition was cancelled) and they had to petition their country’s football authorities to grant permission for them to participate, such is the mess that Ghana’s domestic game has fallen into following a corruption scandal which erupted midway through the year. The Porcupine Warriors received a bye through the preliminary round after their proposed Cameroonian opponents weren’t confirmed, but they will have no such smooth sailing against Kenya’s Kariobangi Sharks, who proved their worth with a 9-1 aggregate victory over Djibouti’s Arta/Solar 7.
USM Bel Abbes (Algeria) v Enugu Rangers (Nigeria)
Venue: Stade du 24 Fevrier, Sidi Bel Abbes
Kick-off: 17h00 CAT
Referee: Isaac Montgomery (Liberia)
Enugu Rangers have been one of the traditional powerhouses in Nigerian football and their triumph in the country’s Federation Cup earlier this year has earned them this spot in the Confed Cup. The Flying Antelopes overpowered Ethiopia’s Defence Force 5-1 on aggregate in the preliminary round, but they’ll likely find Algerian Cup winners USM Bel Abbes to be sterner opposition – especially at the Stade du 24 Fevrier. The Red and Greens claimed an emphatic 4-1 aggregate win over Liberian side LISCR to earn their place in this phase of the continental competition.