Thursday Apr 06, 2023. 13:00
The draw for the CAF Champions League quarter-finals took place in Cairo on Wednesday evening, with Wydad Casablanca set to continue their title defence against Simba.
The Red Castle, who beat Al Ahly 2-0 in last season’s final to lift the covered trophy for the third time, won Group A with a record of four wins, one draw and one defeat.
The Reds of Msimbazi are making their third appearance in the quarter-finals after finishing runners-up in Group C, having never made it past this stage of the competition.
Meanwhile, record 10-time African champions Al Ahly have been paired with Raja Casablanca for the second year in succession.
The Red Eagles ousted Raja 3-2 on aggregate in 2021-22, although the Green Eagles could pose a more formidable threat this time around after going unbeaten in Group C and recording the most points (17) in the group stages.
Marcel Koller’s side scraped into the knockout stages as runners-up in Group B courtesy of a 3-0 win over Al Hilal on matchday 6 to eliminate the Blue Wave on goal difference.
Elsewhere, Mamelodi Sundowns will continue their quest for a second title against CR Belouizdad, who have reached the last eight for the third year running.
The Brazilians were crowned DStv Premiership champions for a record sixth consecutive season last week and are amongst the favourites to win the CAF Champions League after also emerging from Group A undefeated.
The Great Chabab finished second to ES Tunis in Group D but they will be hard pressed to progress to the semi-final for the first time, having fallen to eventual champions Wydad at the same stage last year.
Another North African showdown pits JS Kabylie against ES Tunis, who are targeting their fifth star as four-time former winners.
JSK won the Cup of Champions Clubs on two occasions but have never contested the CAF Champions League final, only making it as far as the semi-finals in 2010.
The first-leg ties are scheduled for the weekend of 21-22 April, with the second legs taking place the following weekend.
CAF Champions League quarter-final draw:
Simba v Wydad Casablanca
Al Ahly v Raja Casablanca
CR Belouizdad v Mamelodi Sundowns
JS Kabylie v ES Tunis