Moroccan Wydad Athletic Club, the defending champion, and Algeria’s JS Kabylie joined the qualifiers for the quarter-finals of the African Champions League football competition, after the first tied negatively with its host Vita Club from the Democratic Republic of the Congo on Saturday, March 18, 2023, and the second defeated its Angolan guest Petro Atletico 1-0.
Mamelodi Sundowns of South Africa rendered a great service to Al-Ahly of Egypt, after it dropped its host Al-Hilal of Sudan in a 1-1 draw trap, in the fifth round of the group stage.
After losing an opening match against JS Kabylie, Wydad became the first to qualify for Group A, as it raised its tally to 10 points, behind Al-Shabiba by direct confrontation difference. Petro Atletico came third with four points, while Vita remained at the bottom of the standings with four points as well.
And at the “Masamba Diba” stadium in the Congolese capital, Brazzaville, Wydad entered looking to follow up on its victories, while the host rushed to achieve the three points and revive hopes of reaching the quarter-finals.
“Wydad Al-Umma” completely dominated in the first half, but was unable to penetrate the defensive bloc of the landowners.
Neither team was able to break through the other, and the match ended in a goalless draw.
And at the “5 July” stadium in the Algerian capital, the match between the “Canary” and its Angolan guest came as a record of missed opportunities, especially from the side of the guests, as goalkeeper Abdel Rahman Majadel shone in order to keep his net clean, especially in front of Gilberto’s false shot (35).
The Algerian team pressed hard in the second half, especially after the offensive substitutions of coach Miloud Hamdi, and Reda Boumashra hit a missile that was blocked by goalkeeper Hugo Marquis (65).
The pressure of the youth resulted in the goal of qualifying through substitute Dadi Mwaqi, after he received a deep pass from Sofiane Keinaina, so he cleverly sent it into the far corner of goalkeeper Marquis’s goal (89).
On the other hand, Mamelodi Sundowns, the guarantor of its qualification since the previous round, kept the hopes of Al-Ahly, who holds the record for the number of titles (10), after it returned with a draw from the land of its host Al-Hilal Al-Sudanese 1-1 at the “Blue Jewel” stadium in Omdurman.
Sundowns maintained the lead in Group Two with 11 points, a point ahead of Al-Hilal, and Al-Ahly, the winner on Friday, beat Cameroonian Coton Sport with a clean four, third with seven points, and Cotton fourth without a score.
Al-Ahly needs to win any result to reach the next round, while Al-Hilal is enough for a draw.
The Sudanese team missed the opportunity after its international player, Athar Al-Taher, missed a penalty kick in the last minute.