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VIDEO: TP Mazembe stroll into CAF Champions League final
Al Merrikh looked to protect their one goal lead from the first leg thus surrendered the initiative to Mazembe from kickoff. The Congolese controlled the game but did not create great chances. It was still a game on the edge though as one goal was all the home side needed to lead the aggregate scoreline. Al Merrikh defended deep and only gained some ascendancy as the first half came to a close.
The Crocodiles started the second half in stronger fashion and gave early warnings to Garzitto’s team. Samatta and, substitute, Assale had efforts to break the deadlock. The momentum continued and Adjei was adjudged to have been offside to deny Mazembe the opener. The relief only lasted a minute for Merreikh as Samatta headed home a Traore corner on 53 minutes.
Mazembe did not give the visitors an opportunity to get into the game and increased their intensity after the goal. After a few missed efforts, the home side gave themselves some breathing room with Samatta’s second of the day. Yaw Frimpong beat is marker on the right before setting the Tanzanian for a tap home on the 69th minute. Assale put the result beyond doubt as he smashed home a rebound only two minutes later.
This will be TP Mazembe’s seventh Champions League final; a record bested only by Al Ahly. They face USM Alger in a successive Congolese vs Algerian final. The first leg will be in Algiers on the weekend of 30th October to 1st November with the tournament ending a week later in Lubumbashi.