Zamalek bids farewell to the African Champions League with a thrilling 4-3 victory over Sudan’s Al-Merrikh. This marked the conclusion of the group stage in the sixth and final round of the competition. Considered a consolidation for both teams, who exited the competition early, Zamalek secured the third spot with 7 points, while Al-Merrikh languishes at the bottom with 5 points.
Saturday sees Tunisia’s Esperance face off against the second-placed ES Setif at the Hamadi Agrebi Stadium, as they battle for the group’s top spot. “Bab Souika” holds ten points against Setif’s nine, with both teams having secured qualification from Group Four in the Arab section.
Meanwhile, Morocco’s Raja Casablanca, leading with 13 points, confronts Tanzanian side Simba SC, who has 9 points, at the Mohammed V Stadium on Saturday. The outcome will not affect the group’s leadership.
Zamalek took an early lead with two goals in three minutes, courtesy of a pass from Ahmed Belhadj to the unmarked Mustafa Shalaby, who netted the first goal in the first minute. Belhadj then assisted Nasser Mansi, who scored the second (3rd minute). Ramadan Ajab narrowed the gap for Al-Merrikh with a goal in the 7th minute.
At the start of the second half, Al-Merrikh equalized through substitute Jozley Noah (48th minute). Brazilian Paulo Sergio then headed Al-Merrikh into the lead (56th minute). Zamalek responded, with Mansi equalizing after an assist from Abdullah Jumaa and a header from Mansi (64th minute). Mansi completed his hat-trick and secured the fourth goal for his team in the dying minutes after a pass from substitute Abdullah Mohamed (90+4).
In Group Three, Horoya AC of Guinea secured a 2-0 victory over Ugandan side Vipers SC in Conakry, raising Horoya’s points to 7, while Vipers, with 2 points, suffered their fourth loss alongside two draws.