Rayon face AC Leopards in Champions League
Caf Champions League
Rayon Sports vs. AC Leopards de Dolisie
Mbabane Swallows [Swa] vs. Nkana [Bot]
KCCA [Uga] vs. El Merreikh [Sud]
Kano Pillars [NGR] vs. AS Vita [DRC]
Flambeau de l’est (Bur) vs. Diables Noirs (Cgo)
Komorozine (Com) vs. Young Africans (Tan)
Diamond Stars (Srl) vs. Raja CA (Mor)
ASFA Yennenga (Bur) vs. Diambars (Sen)
AS Real (Mal) vs. AS FAR (Mor)
Black Africa (Nam) vs Kaizer Chiefs (SA)
Nkana (Zam) vs. Mbabane Swallows (Swaz
RWANDAN league champions Rayon Sports are on the verge of creating a major CAF Champions League upset this Saturday by eliminating Congo outfit AC Leopards de Dolisie.
Rayon Sports look destined to advance to the next stage of the competition by winning their CAF Confederation Cup second-leg match at the Amahoro National Stadium this afternoon.
Neither of the side found the net in the first leg played in Dolisie played last week and home side, Rayon Sports, with a major fan base in the country are primed for a decisive win.
Head Coach Luc Eymael who is missing impressive duo of suspended goalie Jean Luc Ndayishimiye and injured midfielder Alprodis Hategikimana has refused to give up on his club’s chances of advancing to the next round, insisting his charges are capable of winning the home tie.
“We have a chance but we have to work harder. We played a good game in the first leg and we are keen on repeating our performance in bid to secure a home victory. AC Leopards is a good team and we know they will give us a good fight,
“We want a home win and fans should all flock the stadium in numbers to help us attain this crucial victory. We have to make Rwandans proud and everyone is ready for the task,” added the Belgian.
His fellow Belgian counterpart Patrick Aussems was shocked by Rayon Sports performance and will be hoping to repeat the 2011 heroices when they beat Etincelles 2-0 in Kigali after a goalless draw at home.
The 2012 Confederation Cup winners have their reputation to protect against the Rwandans and coach Aussems believes the dream is achievable.
“We just have to work on our errors. We are still in the game and it will be a different ball game on an away turf. We can make it happen,”
“If we play according to our plans, we will easily return back home victors because of the quality of players I have at my disposal who are ready for the task,” said Aussems who pockets $40,000 a month.
The last continental appearance for Rayon Sports was wayback in 2005 when they faced preliminary round elimination to DR Congo Motema Pembe. The blues won 2-0 in Kigali before losing 3-0 away in Congo.
Leopards has a clean record away
AC Leopards started featuring in Caf competitions in 2010 and since then they have not lost a preliminary round elimination.
In 2011, they played a 1-all draw against Etincelles courtesy of Iddy Nshimiyimana’s header in Dolisie before winning the return leg 2-0 in Rubavu.
In 2012, they lost 2-1 to Club Sportif Sfaxien in the first leg of the Africa Confederation Cup finals in Congo but made a surprise comeback winning 2-0 in Tunisia to lift the title.
Before they faced elimination in the 2013 Champions’ league group stages, they had lost 2-0 at home against CF Mounana of Gabon and won the return leg in Libreville 3-0.
In 19 continental matches played so far, AC Leopards has atleast scored a goal in thirteen matches.
Elsewhere, Sudanese champions, Al-Merreikh and Nkana FC of Zambia have daunting tasks in the second leg matches of the preliminary round of the Orange CAF Champions League.
Both clubs suffered 0-2 losses, Merreikh at home to Kampala City Council (KCC) of Uganda whilst Nkana were humbled 2-0 by Mbabane Swallows of Swaziland in Mbabane; and have no option other than overturn the results to remain in the hunt in the premier continental club championship.
A denting record of failing to go past the prelims for the first time is staring in the face of Merreikh, who have been longing to make the group stage since 2009. ‘Al-Zaeem’ must cough out a phenomenal output against their Ugandan hosts, who go into the game with a 2-0 advantage from the first leg.
In the northern Nigeria city of Kano, champions Kano Pillars have been boosted by the availability of Shehu Abdulahi and Ezekiel Mba in their quest to overturn a 3-1 loss over AS Vita Club of DR Congo.
Five-time winners, Zamalek of Egypt travels to Niamey to face AS Douanes of Niger with a 2-0 win from the first leg, whilst Diamond Stars of Sierra Leone will square Raja Athletic Club of Morocco in Freetown.
Burundian champions, Flambeau de l’EST are eyeing a double over Congolese side, Diables Noirs in Bujumbura after a lone goal win in Brazzaville.
Atlabara, the first South Sudanese club to compete in the premier continental club championship, will square former Ghana champions, Berekum Chelsea in Khartoum whilst Akonangui of Equatorial Guinea will sort things out with Astres Douala from neighbouring Cameroon in Malabo.
Zanzibar champions, KMKM will engage Dedebit of Ethiopia in Amaan, Komorozine of Comoros versus Young Africans of Tanzania in Moroni whilst Horoya lock horns with FC Nouadhibou of Mauritania in the Guinean capital, Conakry.