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Last Updated: Tuesday, 20 November 2007, 12:54 GMT
Etoile's eastern promise
By Piers Edwards
BBC Sport

Othman Jenayeh
Othman Jenayeh presided over Etoile from 1993 until 2006
The former president of Tunisia's Etoile du Sahel is predicting a bright debut for the new African champions at next month's Club World Cup in Japan.

Etoile, who won their first Champions League earlier this month, face Mexico's Pachuca on 9 December.

"I'm sure Etoile will show the victory over Al Ahly was well deserved," Othman Jenayeh told BBC Sport.

"Etoile have a good chance of beating Pachuca; they're not top of the Mexican league, but they're a good team."

"If we beat them, we would play Boca Juniors (Argentina's Copa Libertadores winners) in the semi-final so we have many dreams now."

Etoile's full house
Etoile's club logo
Jenayeh's presidency ushered in a period of success that has seen Etoile become the first African side to win all of the continent's major club competitions.
Caf Cup: 1995, 1999
Cup Winners' Cup:1997, 2003
Confederation Cup: 2006
Champions League: 2007
Super Cup: 1998

Etoile earned the right to face Pachuca, the Concacaf Champions Cup holders, after beating Egypt's Al Ahly 3-1 on aggregate in the final.

This represented a personal milestone for Jenayeh, who joined Etoile as a 12-year-old and represented the club as a player for over a decade before assuming the presidency back in 1993.

Until he stepped down last year, the former striker had invested a considerable part of his life trying to establish the Sousse-based club as Africa's best.

"This victory makes me feel something in my heart," the 59-year-old explains.

"For long days and years, we built Etoile to reach this level and I am sure the fans know I had some input into the victory.

"We can now say that Etoile are the best in Africa - especially as we beat Al Ahly in their Cairo Stadium," says Jenayeh.

"Even though it's harder to stay on the top than to get there, let's savour the victory for now."
Fans of Etoile du Sahel celebrate
Etoile's fan celebrate winning this year's Champions League

These are sweet times for African football's recent bridesmaids, who won their first domestic title since 1997 in May after finishing runners-up for nine successive years.

Etoile continue a wonderful season by becoming the first Tunisian club to participate in the Fifa Club World Cup.

Like European champions AC Milan, New Zealand's Waitakere United as well as Asian champions Urawa Red Diamonds and Iran's Sepahan, Etoile must name their 23-man Club World Cup squad by 30 November.



SEE ALSO
Etoile duo get Ghana call-up
13 Nov 07 |  African
Etoile out to dethrone Ahly
26 Oct 07 |  African
Etoile targets Champs Lge win
25 Oct 07 |  African
Etoile first to final
07 Oct 07 |  African


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