It is a North African affair in the CAF Champions League semis

It is a North African affair in the CAF Champions League semis

There will be a new CAF Champions League winner after Zamalek dumped out defending champions Esperance to join Wydad Casablanca, Raja Casablanca and Al Ahly in the semi-finals. 

Zamalek lost 1-0 in Tunisia but won 2-1 on aggregate while Raja eliminated TP Mazembe with a similar score. In Pretoria, Al Ahly played to a 1-1 draw as they eliminated Mamelodi Sundowns 3-1 on aggregate while Wydad dumped out Etoile with a 2-1 aggregate score. 

In Rades, Billel Ben Saha scored what proved to be the game’s lone goal from the spot after five minutes, but Esperance couldn’t find their much needed second goal to surrender the title they won in the past two seasons.

On Saturday, Karim Aribi scored the lone goal for the hosts, but the burly Algerian forward will remember most the chances he missed as Etoile crashed out to their former coach Juan Carlos Garrido's Wydad. 

In Pretoria, it was sweet revenge for the Egyptians as Ali Maaloul deflected free-kick gave Al Ahly an early lead. Sirino restored parity for Sundowns but it too little too late as the Brazilians crashed out. 

In Lubumbashi,  goalkeeper Anas Zniti proved to be the hero for Raja Club Athletic after saving a 70th minute penalty to see the side progress to the semi-finals for the first time in 15 years with a 2-1 aggregate win over TP Mazembe. Sixteen-year-old Isaac Tshibangu scored the solitary goal of the match four minutes into the second half, but the protracted comeback did not go to the full-length thanks to Zniti’s heroics.

CAF Champions League Quarterfinal results

  • Mamelodi Sundowns 1 (1)- 1 (3) Al Ahly
  • Etoile 1 (1)- 0 (2) Wydad
  • TP Mazembe 1 (1)- 0 (2) Raja
  • Esperance 1 (1)- 0 (2) Zamalek