Friday, August 14, 2009

Caf Champions league weekend previews

The two frontrunners in African Champions League Group A meet tonight as Sudan’s Al Hilal host Kano Pillars from Nigeria in Omdurman.

Both teams have four points from two matches, three ahead of Zambian side Zesco United and Sudan’s Al Merreikh.

Given the ongoing war of words between the Sudanese FA and their Nigerian counterparts over alleged transfer irregularities when Al Hilal sent two players on loan to Nigerian clubs, there is sure to be added spice to this fixture.

The Sudanese side will be brimming with confidence having not been beaten at home in CAF competitions in April 2001 when they lost 1-0 to Egyptian giants Zamalek.

Their form in this season’s Champions League competition has been scratchy though. After an opening round bye they lost 2-1 away from home to Reunion minnows US Stade Tamponnaise, but managed to claw the tie back with a 3-1 victory at home.

They also lost 3-1 on the road to Angolan side Primeiro de Agosto, but were once again saved by their home form as a 2-0 win ensured victory on the away goals rule.

They have started their Group A campaign well enough with a 0-0 draw away from home against compatriots Al Merreikh and a deserved, if unspectacular 1-0 home win over Zesco United in the last round of matches.

Pillars, conquerors of the African champions Al Ahly earlier in the competition, are still without an away win in this year’s tournament, and have in fact drawn six of their eight matches to date, relying on the away goals rule in the knockout stages.

Their Group A form so far includes an away draw with Zesco and a comprehensive 3-1 home victory over Al Merreikh.

No Ghanaian clubs are included.

Here are the rest of the games till later in the year.