11 February 2018 12:12
Egyptian side Al Masry put a foot at the next round after managing a 4-0 home victory over Zambian visitors Green Buffaloes on Saturday in Port Said. Al Masry will head to Lusaka for the preliminary round return leg in top gear, as Buffaloes need to score at least five unanswered goals to edge them out.
Led by the legendary Hossam Hassan, the Port Said based side started the game on high note, and could have took the lead as early as the second minute when striker Ahmed Gomaa fired a long range shot that forced a superb save from the visitors goalkeeper Fred Silwamba. Defender Mohamed Shatta's header went just wide and the opener was just few minutes away.
It came after 14 minutes when skipper Islam Salah broke the deadlock with a clear header from Islam Eissa's corner kick.
Masry continued to press for more goals, while the visitors looked hapless. Burkinabe-import Aristide Bance saw his shot missing the goal with just inches on the half hour mark.
Bance finally doubled the lead five minutes before the break. The lanky forward capitalised on a loose ball inside Buffaloes area to put the ball into the net, and give Masry a two goal lead at the interval.
The second half was no different story, and the third goal came through another Burkinabe import. Defender Mohamed Koffi headed home from Eissa's freekick on 56 minutes.
It was all an one-way affair, and Eissa turned from provider to scorer nine minutes from time to put the icing on the cake and send the fans into a partying mood after seeing their team play for the first time in Port Said in six years.
The return leg is scheduled for Tuesday, 20 February 2018 in Lusaka with the aggregate winner qualifying to the 1/16th round where they will face either Tanzania's Simba or Gendarmerie of Djibouti.
Hossam Hassan (Head Coach, Al Masry)
I'm satisfied with the result. Thank God we managed to make our fans happy. We had a very good game, but we have won nothing yet. There's still a game to be played in Lusaka and our target is to qualify to the next round. Green Buffaloes is a good team and are well organized. Today, we were the better side but we have to remain focused in the return leg.
Aristide Bance (Forward, Al Masry)
We are thrilled with the result. It was very important to win at home, and I'm happy I scored. Playing under a great coach like Hossam Hassan is a privilege, and I will give my all for the team. Our target now is to continue the good work in the reverse leg.
Friday, 9 February 2018
Djoliba (Mali) vs ELWA United (Liberia)*
Onze Createurs (Mali) 1-1 CR Belouizdad (Algeria)
Saturday, 10 February 2018
Petro Atletico (Angola) 5-0 Masters Security (Malawi)
Young Buffaloes (Swaziland) 0-1 Cape Town City (South Africa)
Costa do Sol (Mozambique) 1-0 Jwaneng (Botswana)
Energie (Benin) 1-0 Hafia (Guinea)
Ngazi Sport (Comoros) 1-1 Port Louis (Mauritius)
Mangasport (Gabon) 0-1 Maniema Union (DR Congo)
Olympic Star (Burundi) 0-0 Etoile Filante (Burkina Faso)
New Stars (Cameroon) 2-1 Deportivo Niefang (Equatorial Guinea)
Tanda (Cote d’Ivoire) 0-0 CS la Mancha (Congo)
Al Ittihad (Libya) 1-0 Sahel (Niger)
El Masry (Egypt) 4-0 Green Buffaloes (Zambia)
US Ben Guerdane (Tunisia) vs Hilal Juba (South Sudan)**
Sunday, 11 February 2018
APR (Rwanda) vs Anse Reunion (Seychelles)
Akwa United (Nigeria) vs Hawks (Gambia)
Asante Kotoko (Ghana) vs CARA (Congo)
AFC Leopards (Kenya) vs FOSA Juniors (Madagascar)
Simba (Tanzania) vs Gendarmerie (Djibouti)
RS Berkane (Morocco) vs Mbour Petite Cote (Senegal)
Africa Sports (Cote d’Ivoire) vs FC Nouadhibou (Mauritania)
Zimamoto (Zanzibar) vs Wolaitta Dicha (Ethiopia)
*ELWA United withdrew
** US Ben Guerdane awarded a 3-0 win after Hilal Juba forfeited the match