CAF Champions League preview, 21-23 December 2018

CAF Champions League preview, 21-23 December 2018
Gaston Sirino of Mamelodi Sundowns celebrates goal with teammates during the Absa Premiership match between Mamelodi Sundowns and Free State Stars on the 07 November 2018 at Loftus Versfeld Stadium / Pic Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

by Staff Reporter

Thursday Dec 20, 2018. 09:00

Group stage field to be decided this weekend.

The first round of the 2018/19 CAF Champions League will wrap up with 15 matches across the continent this coming weekend.

The action gets underway on Friday night in Ethiopia when Jimma Aba Jifar take on the challenge of trying to overturn a 2-0 deficit against eight-time champions and Egyptian heavyweights Al Ahly.

Saturday features Nigerian side Lobi Stars looking to overturn a 3-1 deficit when they host Kenya’s Gor Mahia in Enugu, TP Mazembe taking a 1-0 lead to Ndola where they will take on hosts Zesco United, and South African sides Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns looking to take hold of their goalless ties against Africa Sports (in Windhoek) and Al Ahly Benghazi (in Pretoria) respectively.

Elsewhere on Saturday, North African sides Ismaily, CS Constantine and Wydad Casablanca take leads into away legs against Cameroon’s Coton Sport, Uganda’s Vipers and Senegalese hopefuls ASC Diaraf.

The pick of Sunday’s games comes from Abidjan, where Ivorian giants ASEC Mimosas enjoy a 1-0 lead over Stade Malien, while Tanzanian side Simba will aim to overturn a 2-1 first-leg defeat at the hands of Zambian side Nkana.

Another key match comes from Omdurman in Sudan, where Al Hilal will have their work cut out to recover from a 3-1 loss away to Tunisia’s Club African last weekend.

The 15 aggregate winners will join 2018 competition winners Esperance de Tunis in the group stage, while the losers will ‘drop’ into the playoff round of the second-tier CAF Confederation Cup.

CAF Champions League fixtures, 21-23 December 2018

Aggregate scores in parenthesis

Friday 21 December

Jimma Aba Jifar v Al Ahly (0-2)

Saturday 22 December

Lobi Stars v Gor Mahia (1-3)
FC Platinum v AS Otoho (1-1)
Mamelodi Sundowns v Al Ahly Benghazi (0-0)
Zesco United v TP Mazembe (0-1)
Coton Sport v Ismaily (0-2)
African Stars v Orlando Pirates (0-0)
Vipers v CS Constantine (0-1)
ASC Diaraf v Wydad Casablanca (0-2)

Sunday 23 December

Bantu v AS Vita (1-4)
Simba SC v Nkana (1-2)
ASEC Mimosas v Stade Malien (1-0)
Ittihad Tanger v JS Saoura (0-2)
Horoya v Al Nasr (0-3)
Al Hilal v Club Africain (1-3)

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