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Coton Sport 2-2 Al Ahly

Al Ahly players celebrate their opening goal
Al Ahly's Ahmed Hassan gave the visitors an early lead
Egypt's Al Ahly have won a record sixth African Champions League title, after they drew 2-2 with Cameroon's Coton Sport, to win the final 4-2 on aggregate.

The Garoua-based side faced an uphill task against the five-time champions, who held a 2-0 lead from the first leg two weeks ago.

But they fought back from a goal down to give Ahly a real challenge. It was not, however, enough in the end as the Cairo team levelled it up through a penalty and went on to take the trophy.

The BBC's Nick Cavell, in Garoua, provided updates throughout the biggest club game in the African calendar.


1614: Club captain Shady Mohamed, who scored the deciding goal of the 2008 African Champions League final, fittingly lifts the trophy to the delight of his colleagues, all wearing red Al Ahly T-shirts proclaiming the word "Champions". A subdued Omnisport Stadium looks on.

1555: Al Ahly players are celebrating in front of their fans as they enjoy their historic victory.

1554: Al Ahly coach Manuel Jose has now led his side to four Champions League triumphs, the Portuguese boss triumphing in 2001, 2005, 2006 and now 2008. Al Ahly will represent Africa at next month's World Club Cup in Japan for the third time.

1553: FULL TIME. Coton Sport 2-2 Al Ahly (Ahly win 4-2 on aggregate) Al Ahly become the first club in the history of African football to be crowned continental champions six times, eclipsing the five titles held by Cairo rivals Zamalek. The Red Devils were fortunate to avoid defeat against a spirited Coton Sport side, who were let down by some weak finishing, but they run out comfortable 4-2 aggregate winners as Caf president Issa Hayatou looks on.

1553: Coton Sport refuse to give up as they force yet another corner - which is headed over by Lassina, when he should have done better.

1549: We're into injury time with just a couple of minutes left on the clock.

1546: GOAL! Coton Sport 2-2 Al Ahly. It's game over as club captain Mohamed Shady rolls the ball into the left-hand side of the goal, the goalkeeper going the other way, and the Egyptian fans are celebrating with lit flares again as they know a record sixth African Champions League title is on its way to the club.

1546: Andre Ndame Ndame is booked after bringing down Ahmed Fathi in the box.

1545: Penalty to Al Ahly.

1544: Coton Sport's Ousmaila Baba will look back on this game with mixed emotions, wasting yet another chance when expertly placed to score. Yards from goal on the corner of the six-yard box, his shot is powder puff though.

1543: Al Ahly's name seems to be written on the trophy as for the first time in the match, Coton Sport look as though the extra goals they need are beyond them. Possession is the name of the game for the Egyptians yet Coton Sport still look threatening and purposeful as they go forward.

1542: Al Ahly's loyal travelling fans have started celebrating. They think a sixth title is theirs.

1541: Coton Sport force another corner as they desperately seek the two goals they need to avoid defeat.

1538: Traore Fankele comes on for Coton Sport, replacing Oumarou Sanda as coach Alain Oumbleon rings the changes. Al Ahly are just 10 minutes away from winning African club football's greatest trophy for a record sixth time.

1533: Coton Sport's Kamilou Daouda is booked for pushing an opponent in the penalty area.

1532: Al Ahly's Ahmed Fathi enters the fray.

Al Ahly's Ahmad Hassan fights for the ball with Kimgue Mondo of Coton Sport
It was a tense affair in Garoua, as the home side looked to reduce the deficit

1529: Some home fans are mistakenly celebrating, believing Daogari Zoua's well-hit right-footed shot from near the corner of the penalty area has gone in but in fact the ball had hit the side netting. Coton Sport are getting a lot of joy down their left flank, constantly exposing Al Ahly there.

1529: The crowd are chanting "le but, le but" - French for "the goal, the goal".

1528: Coton Sport make their first substitution of the match as Andre Ndame Ndame replaces Henri Minka.

1526: Coton Sport waste another fantastic opportunity, Daouda failing to direct his header on target when Ndzana Kana's left-wing cross finds the forward totally unmarked just six yards from goal.

1521: Baba wastes a glorious chance to make it 3-1 when hitting a weak shot at Abdel Hamid when clear on goal and in acres of space inside the penalty area. Seconds later, Coton Sport are convinced they should have had a penalty, believing an Al Ahly defender had handled but any contact, if indeed there was any, appeared accidental.

1521: It's fair to say that the noise level in the Omnisport Stadium has increased significantly!

1519: GOAL!! Coton Sport 2-1 Al Ahly. Game on as the home side celebrate wildly after Ousmaila Baba finally hit the target, heading into an open goal after Lassina's free-kick is brilliantly headed back across goal. A fantastic team goal which has reinvigorated the Cameroonians.

1517: Kamilou Daouda is unlucky not to score, as the impressive striker glances a left-wing cross just inches over the crossbar with Abdel Hamid beaten.

1517: Al Ahly goalscorer, and Egypt captain, Ahmed Hassan leaves the pitch with injury, substituted by Tunisian Anis Boujelbene.

1515: A last-ditch tackle from Wael Gomaa prevents Coton Sport from scoring a second goal as the home side pile on the pressure - Baba again involved in the action.

1514: Coton Sport's Baba is wasteful again, failing to hit the target for the third time after Daouda's cleverly-disguised through ball finds him unmarked on the edge of the penalty area, but his shot in no way troubles the Ahly goal.

1513: The home fans try and start a Mexican wave without much success. They'll hope their team can have better luck on the pitch.

1511: Al Ahly keeper Abdel Hamid denies Kamilou Daouda with a fine block, after the Coton Sport striker fires a fine left-footed angled strike on goal from 10 yards out. Another important save from the Al Ahly stopper.

1508: Coton Sport think they should have won a penalty after a fine attacking move ends with one of their players going down in the box. Yet Algerian referee Haimoudi Djamel ignroes the protests. Seconds later, goalscorer Abdoul Karim Lassina receives a yellow card after pulling down Mohammed Aboutrika, seemingly in frustration following the referee's failure to point to the spot.

1505: Coton Sport's Ousmaila Baba, who missed a gaping chance when just two yards out in the first half, once again fails to hit the target, as he flashes a volley wide 15 yards from goal.

Al Ahly fans in Garoua
Ahly had around 100 loyal fans travelling with them in Cameroon
1504: They will need their fans to find their voice again, however, as they are surprisingly subdued. No link being implied with the half-time entertainment.

1502: Al Ahly restart the match, with home side Coton Sport knowing they need three more goals to get themselves back into this match.

1455: The half-time entertainment comprises some great juggling tricks with a football.

1447: The referee blows the whistle for half-time, as Coton Sport go in on a high after equalising at a crucial point in the game, just before the break. The home side and fans are back on song after cancelling out the first goal they conceded at home in this year's competition.

1446: GOAL! Coton Sport 1-1 Al Ahly. The home side score a most deserved of equalisers after Kamilou Daouda tip-toes to the byline in the penalty area before pulling a clever ball back to Abdoul Karim Lassina who thunders home a fine low left-footed strike from 15 yards out.

1445: Ahly are more confident now, buoyed by a 3-0 aggregate lead. There will be two minutes of injury time.

1444: The home fans have been stunned into silence after totally dominating the game up until the goal was scored.

1439: The Al Ahly fans celebrate by lighting a number of flares in their section of the stadium.

Coton Sport fans in Garoua
Coton Sport were attempting to win their first Champions League title
1436: GOAL! Coton Sport 0-1 Al Ahly. Al Ahly score completely against the run of play after the Egyptians win their first corner of the match. Mohammed Aboutrika plays a 1-2 with Gilberto before crossing for Ahmed Hassan, who flicks home from eight yards with the outside of his right boot to give the Coton Sport keeper no chance as well as handing Al Ahly an ill-deserved lead. Cotonsport must now score four times if they are to win this year's title.

1433: Coton Sport win another corner as they keep up the pressure on Egypt's five-time African champions. Abdel Hamid blocks the effort in spectacular fashion before yet another home effort is fired over the bar from long range. At present, Al Ahly are finding it very hard to settle and get into any sort of rythm.

1431: Another corner to Coton Sport rallies the home supporters. Yet Abdoul Karim Lassina's excellent in-swinging corner should have been converted by Ousmaili Baba who fails to get his head on the ball when faced with a gaping net. The best chance of the game by far, and one that should have been taken.

1427: Al Ahly's Gilberto flights in a free-kick from a promising position near the corner flag but the Egyptians fail to trouble Coton Sport keeper Daouda Kassaly as the danger is cleared.

1426: Ahly are patiently playing the ball around, happy to wait for opportunities to come their way.

1424: Al Ahly enjoy one of the best spells of possession but once again are unable to find a way through the Cameroonians' stubborn defence.

Al Ahly players train on Saturday
Al Ahly were chasing a record six Champions League titles
1420: Abdoul Karim Lassina lets fly with an absolute bullet from a central position 30 yards out, but Abdelhamid repels the danger as he blocks with a flying save. Important intervention as the ball was destined for goal.

1419: Al Ahly have yet to fashion a shot on goal as Coton Sport go in search for the goals they need if they are to win their maiden Champions League title.

1415: Coton Sport are still largely being restricted to long-range shots, but force a corner following good build-up play in Ahly's half. The resulting corner is wasted though after it is badly over-hit.

1409: Coton Sport keep up the early pressure but a 25-yard effort again fails to threaten the Ahly keeper. The home side are using their flanks well to attack the visitors' goal.

1405: Coton Sport waste an opportunity to reduce the deficit when Abdoul Karim Lassina curls a free-kick from just outside the D, wide of the right-hand post, failing to trouble the Ahly goalkeeper.

1404: The crowd of just over 25,000 find their voice after Coton Sport's first chance on goal. The Ahly fans are trying their best.

1401: Coton Sport immediately threaten but Al Ahly goalkeeper Abdel Hamid makes a brave stop, injuring himself in the process as play is briefly held up while he receives treatment.

1400: Coton Sport get the second leg of the 2008 Champions League final underway.

1358: The atmosphere is building ahead of kick-off, the ground is almost full to capacity. Ahly have about 100 loyal fans here with them, who are now lighting flares.

1355: The players are now on the pitch for the official presentations, and the crowd are very much ready for the kick-off.

1350: The atmosphere is quite tense ahead of the biggest game in Coton Sport's history. The teams have been read out, the president of Caf Issa Hayatou is here - it is his home town after all.

1340: The teams have come out onto the pitch and have warmed up. The stadium is almost full. Ahly have named the same team as they had for the first leg. Coton Sport make one change - Oumara Sanda replaces suspended captain Amadou Ngomma.



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see also
Coton Sport seek to upset Ahly
15 Nov 08 |  African
Coton Sport turn up heat on Ahly
13 Nov 08 |  African
Al Ahly 2 Coton Sport 0
02 Nov 08 |  African


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