Home / Sports / D-Day for Makepekepe

D-Day for Makepekepe

AL AHLY, Zamalek, Etoile du Sahel or Mamelodi Sundowns?

One of these giants, all former African champions, will be paired against CAPS United when the draw for the CAF Champions League group stage is made in Cairo, Egypt, today.

The Green Machine, who caused the biggest shock of the tournament by knocking out five-time champions TP Mazembe of DRC, can only take one of them in their group.

CAPS United fans will possibly tell you they prefer Sundowns, for a romantic meeting with Khama Billiat and Peter Ndlovu, once again after Chicken Inn impressed against the Pretoria giants last year.

The Harare giants’ leaders will also tell you, in terms of cutting costs in a campaign where they are yet to get a sponsor despite the heroics they have performed, a battle against the Brazilians also makes a lot of sense.

After all, it’s just a one-and-a-half hour flight to South Africa and, as was the case in their game against TP Mazembe, they can charter a flight to and from Pretoria.

And, of course, they will have plenty of Zimbabwean football fans backing their cause in that away game where they will feel like home.

But, chances are that they will meet one of the three North African giants. There are 50 percent chances they will go to Cairo, 25 percent chances they will go to Tunisia and 25 percent chances they will go to Pretoria.

But when you are a side who have knocked out TP Mazembe, a side that has perfected the art of beating these North African giants in recent years, there is no reason for a trip to that part of the continent to send shivers down your spines.

Some analysts have been saying Al Ahly have been in decline, they are not the power they were in the past, and that they failed to make the group stages of the Champions League last year probably hammers home that point.

But Zamalek made it all the way to the final where they were outclassed by Sundowns and there has been turmoil in their camp, in recent weeks, with fans demanding that the club president steps down.

The second pot — which features Al Hilal, Esperance, Wydad Casablanca and USM Alger — also has very strong opposition and one of them will be taking on Makepekepe.

Makepekepe’s biggest rivals Dynamos still have mixed emotions of their battle against Algerian opponents in the 2011 Champions League when they thrashed MC Alger 4-1 at Rufaro, thanks to an irresistible display of attacking football that brought the talent of Denver Mukamba — before he lost his way in South Africa — to the fore.

Then, in Algeria, they were given a reality check of what it means to play on the continent with their hosts winning 3-0, thanks to some questionable officiating, with two of the DeMbare players being sent off.

The third pot also has some tough opposition — Al Merrikh, Coton Sport, the consistent AS Vita, who have former Makepekepe star Oscar Machapa among their players, and Al Ahli Tripoli — and by the end of today, one of these teams will have been paired to meet Makepekepe.

Coton Sport of Cameroon are back and in 2008 they ended Dynamos adventure in the CAF Champions League at the semi-final stage.

AS Vita have been regulars on the continent, where they have proved a tough team to beat, and they knocked DeMbare and Kaizer Chiefs out of the Champions League a few years ago only to fall at the final hurdle as they were beaten in the final of that tournament.

Source :


Check Also

Kaitano Tembo silences Kaizer Chiefs

JOHANNESBURG. — SuperSport United’s Zimbabwean coach Kaitano Tembo was pleased with his side’s work without …