Tanzania’s Simba and title holders Al Ahly of Egypt reached the 2020-21 Total CAF Champions League quarterfinals after guaranteeing top two spots of the Group A in the penultimate match day.
Simba outscored their DR Congo visitors AS Vita Club 4-1 in Dar es Salaam, while Al Ahly scored twice in the final ten minutes to comeback from two goals behind and hold their Sudanese hosts El Merriekeh to a 2-2 draw in Omdurman.
Simba raised their tally to 13 and secured the group’s top spot, while Al Ahly has 8 in second place before they lock horns in Cairo next Friday. AS Vita follows with 4 pints while Merriekh has two with one match to go.
Simba dominated their game against AS Vita in Dar es Salaam, with a “Man of the Match” performance from Luis Miquissone. The Mozambican broke the deadlock for the hosts at the half hour mark, but for Zemanga Soze to restore parity a couple of minutes later.
Clatous Chama made it 2-1 to the hosts just before halftime finishing a brilliant teamwork.
After the break, Simba continued to dominate, and added a third goal through Larry Bwalya after 66 minutes. Clatous Chama completed his brace and put the cherry over Simba’s cake six minutes from full time, as the Tanzanians celebrated topping the group in style.
In the other group game, holders Al Ahly were shocked in the opening half, and were lucky to finish it trailing by just two goals. But produced a late comeback to finish with a point that secured their place in the final eight.
El Merriekh took the lead after 26 minutes when skipper Ramadan Agab’s header from a long range freekick deceived Ahly’s goalkeeper and Captain Mohamed Elshennawy.
Ten minutes later it became 2-0, when Saifeddine Malik finished a swift counterattack with Ahly players left astonished.
It could have been 3-0 just before halftime when Malik was fouled inside the area by Badr Benoun. But Agab’s shot from the spot just missed the target.
After the break, Al Ahly threw everything in attack as they tried to master a comeback. Yet it was the hosts who missed the chance to kill the game with Elshenawy stopping them in a couple of occaions.
Nine minutes from time, Ayman Asharf was fouled inside the area, and from the spot, Benoun made no mistake to half the deficit.
Deep into injury time, defender Yasser Ibrahim rose high to head home from Mohamed Magdy “Afsha” cross to secure Al Ahly a late point and guarantee they continue their title defense campaign.