Confed Cup heats up this weekend

Confed Cup heats up this weekend
Club Sportif Sfaxien players celebrate after scoring against Mouloudia Club D'Alger during the 2017 CAF Confederations Cup game between Sfaxien and Mouloudia Club D'Alger in Sfax, Tunisia on 8 July 2017 © BackpagePix

by Graeme Jackson

Friday Sep 27, 2019. 09:00

The 2019/20 CAF Confederation Cup will resume this weekend with 16 first round, second-leg matches across the African continent.

In no less than six of the matches, home teams will be looking to overturn first-leg deficits, with the most notable examples seeing Tunisia’s CS Sfaxien (three-time Confed Cup champions) looking to come back from 1-3 down at home to Algeria’s Paradou, while Nigeria’s Enugu Rangers are 1-2 down ahead of hosting AS Pelican of Gabon.

Tunisian club US Ben Guerdane must come from 0-2 down if they are to avoid elimination at the hands of Kenya’s Bandari, South Africa’s Bidvest Wits are 0-1 behind ahead of hosting Swaziland’s Young Buffaloes in Johannesburg, and Madagascar’s CNaPS will look to overturn a 0-1 score line against South African second-tier team TS Galaxy in Antananarivo.

Yet the most mouth-watering clash will come from Morocco, where RS Berkane are 2-3 down against Ghana’s Ashanti Gold. The Miners will back themselves to come away from North Africa with a positive result, but the Oranges were runners-up in the Confed Cup last year and determined to go deep into the continental competition once again.

Most of the ties are fairly well balanced heading into the return games, especially the clash between Algeria’s CR Belouizdad and Egypt’s Pyramids, with the first leg in Cairo ending 1-1 earlier this month.

The only teams holding aggregate leads ahead of hosting return clashes are DC Motema Pembe (2-1 up against Al Khartoum), Al Masry (4-1 up against Malindi), Zanaco (2-1 up aganst Bolton City) and Djoliba (2-1 up against Maranatha), all of whom will be confident of progression.

The 16 aggregate winners advance into the playoff round, where they will be paired with a loser from the first round of the top-tier CAF Champions League in a final qualifying phase battle before the group stage.

CAF Confederation Cup, first round, second-leg fixtures

Aggregate scores in parenthesis

Friday 27 September

DC Motema Pembe v Al Khartoum (2-1)

Bidvest Wits v Young Buffaloes (0-1)

Saturday 28 September

CNaPS Sport v TS Galaxy (0-1)

RS Berkane v Ashanti Gold (2-3)

Al Masry v Malindi (4-1)

Hassania Agadir v Al Ittihad Tripoli (1-1)

Salitas v ESAE (0-0)

Proline v AS Kigali (1-1)

Zanaco v Bolton City (2-1)

Triangle United v Azam (1-0)

Sunday 29 September

US Ben Guerdane v Bandari (0-2)

San Pedro v Santoba (0-0)

Djoliba AC v Maranatha (2-1)

Enugu Rangers v AS Pelican (1-2)

CS Sfaxien v Paradou AC (1-3)

CR Belouizdad v Pyramids (1-1)

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