Six North African clubs in Confed Cup quarterfinals


Both countries will have no representatives at the mini-league stage following unconvincing results. This leaves six of the eight teams coming from North Africa and three of these from Tunisia.

For Cameroon, it was the more painful as Mount Cameroon and Astres Douala were bundled out at home while the South African duo, Platinum Stars and Mamelodi Sundowns had their continental ambitions quashed away from home by North African sides, CS Sfaxien of Tunisia and Haras El-Hodoud of Egypt respectively.

Mount Cameroon was the first to suffer the continental exit on Friday, after being held to a one all draw by Angolan side Interclube, which saw the latter progressing 3-2 on aggregate after 2-1 win from the first leg in Luanda.

Striker Franklin Takang sent the crowd at the half-packed Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium in Yaoundé into a jubilant mood with the opener on the half hour-mark before substitute Pedro Costa drew parity for the visitors with a superb strike in the 72nd minute.

Forty-eight hours later in Douala, local side Astres saw their hopes of a second successive appearance at the group phase fizzle into thin air after a shocking lone goal loss to Algerian champions, JS Kabylie.

Midfielder Tayeb Berremla’s 78th minute strike was all the two-time African champions needed to remain in the hunt for a continental title after their exit from the much prestigious Caf-MTN Champions League.

The Algerian outfit went through 2-1 on aggregate.

Reigning Africa champions, Etoile du Sahel progressed smoothly after a barren draw against rivals Esperance Sportive of Tunis.

Etoile, winners of the competition in 2006 advanced on a 2-0 aggregate and kept alive their hopes of a continental honour after being bundled out of the CAF-MTN Champions League by Zimbabwean champions, Dynamos FC.

In Bamako, Club Africain completed a hat-trick of Tunisian clubs at the group phase after edging past favourites, Djoliba of Mali 5-3 on penalties after both legs ended goalless.

At the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in Kumasi, a brace from Eric Bekoe and the other from Jordan Opoku was all Kotoko needed to reach their second appearance at the last eight by disposing of Libyan side Al-Ittihad 3-1.

After a 1-2 loss from the first leg, Kotoko was cruising to a two-goal victory after efforts from Bekoe (9th) and Opoku (61st) till a 79th minute header from substitute Pan-Pierre Coulibaly kept the tie even.

Bekoe, top scorer in the just ended Ghanaian Premier League with 17 goals struck the winner from the spot a minute to full time after Al-Ittihad defender Waled Mhadeb handled in the penalty area.

Kotoko, losing finalists in the maiden edition in 2004 went through 4-3 on aggregate.

In Omdurman, Al-Merrikh assured Sudan football fans of representatives in the two continental club championships for the second year running despite barren draw against OC Khourigba.

Al-Merrikh, losing finalists last year went through on the away goal rule after 2-2 draw from the first leg in Khourigba a fortnight ago.

The day one matches of the group phase have been scheduled for August 15-17.