The Morning Call
On Wednesday in Egypt, the draws ceremonies for both the CAF champions league and confederation cups were done with revenge opportunities served for some while other teams have had their backs on the wall following the pairings.
A point to note in the champions league is the consistency and hegemony of some clubs entering the final sprint of Africa’s most rated club football competitions. All 8 quarter finalists have won the champions league prior and so one may be tempted to say privileges no longer intimidate at this stage as any one can win against any one. They together share 29 trophies with record 8 time winners Al Ahly at the heart of things. Zamalek and TP Mazembe with 5 trophies look set to improve their status on the continent.
Now onto the pairings, South Africans Mamelodi Sundowns will want to rewrite history when they take on Egypt’s Al Ahly after both sides met at the same stage last year. Egypt’s Ahly will have a chance to avenge their humiliating defeat by South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns 5-1 on aggregate.
Raja of Casablanca will host TP Mazembe who crashed out last year at the semi-finals.
Zamalek, who last won the competition in 2002, will face Esperance three times in around three weeks as both sides clash in the African Super Cup on 14 February.
Esperance is on the move to win three successive titles in a bounce, while Wydad Casablanca plays host to Etoile du Sahel.
The first leg games will come up on February 28 and 29.
The winners of the Zamalek-Esperance game will meet either Raja or Mazembe while the winners of the Ahly-Sundowns match will face either Wydad or Etoile in the semifinals.
Enyimba’s expedition for a first CAF Confederation Cup title will continue with a two-legged tie against Horoya in the quarter-finals, while Al-Masry take on RS Berkane.
In other pairings, surprise package Al Nasr of Libya will be involved in another heavyweight tie, as they face Moroccan giants Hassania Agadir who topped Group D.
Zambian giants Zanaco beat DC Motemba Potembe to the ticket for the quarter-final, and they would be hoping to continue with their fairytale against Egypt’s Pyramid.
Major shock in Spain as both Real Madrid and FC Barcelona exit the Copa del Rey at the quarter finals that was last night.
Real Madrid was beaten at home 4-3 by visiting Real Sociedad and at the 70th minute the score board read 4-1 in favor of the visitors as Zidane’s team conceded the heaviest score at home this season. Madrid is only left with the Champions league and the Spanish title to chase this season.
A few minutes after the defeat of their rivals, Leo Messi and his Barcelona side failed to make the semi finals of the competition after they hugely dominated Athletic Bilbao for a major part of the game. but failed to score the needed goal. The tight contest was decided in the third minute of stoppage time when Inaki Williams headed past Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Earlier quarter final results saw Granada qualified ahead of Valencia 2-1, while second tier side Mirandes shocked Villa Real 4-2 to progress to the semis. It is the first time since 2010 that the Copa del Rey final will feature neither Barcelona nor Real.
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