Al Ahly drawn with Esperance in CAF Champions League group stage
Egyptian champions Al Ahly and Tunisian giants Esperance Sportive de Tunis were drawn together for the CAF Champions League group stage.
The draw for the 2018 CAF Champions League group stages, which will see competition between 16 of continent’s elite sides, was held in Cairo on Wednesday night.
Record eight-time champions Al Ahly have been drawn in Group A alongside Township Rollers of Botswana, Uganda’s KCCA, and Tunisian giants Espérance Sportive de Tunis.
Al Ahly advanced to the group stage after beating Gabonese side FC Mounana 7-1 on aggregate. They are Egypt’s only representative in Africa’s top-tier competition after Misr El-Makkasa were eliminated from the preliminary round.
Reigning champions Wydad Casablanca, who beat Al Ahly in last year’s final, have been drawn in Group C alongside AS Port of Togo, Horoya of Guinea and South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns.
Three North African teams, namely Difaa El Jadidi of Morocco, Algeria’s MC Alger and ES Setif will be competing in Group B, alongside 2017 CAF Confederation Cup winners TP Mazembe of DR Congo. Meanwhile, Group D includes Angolan Primero de Agosto, Mbabane Swallows of Swaziland, Zambia’s Zesco and Tunisian Etoile du Sahel.
The first round will kick off on the first week of May, with the group stage set to end late in August. The winners and runners-up of each group advance to the quarter-final of the competition.
Group A: Al Ahly (Egypt), Township Rollers (Botswana), KCCA (Uganda), Esperance (Tunisia)
Group B: Difaa El Jadidi (Morocco), MC Alger (Algeria), ES Setif (Algeria), TP Mazembe (DR Congo)
Group C: AS Port (Togo), Horoya (Guinea), Mamelodi Sundowns (South Africa), Wydad Casablanca (Morocco)
Group D: Primero de Agosto (Angola), Mbabane Swallows (Swaziland), Zesco (Zambia), Etoile du Sahel (Tunisia)
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