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Page last updated at 16:11 GMT, Saturday, 20 March 2010

Defending champions Mazembe suffer Champions Lge loss

African Champions League trophy
Six-times champions Al Ahly enters the 2010 Champions League action

Defending Champions TP Mazembe of DR Congo have suffered a shock 1-0 defeat to APR of Rwanda in the second round of the African Champions League.

It looked like the match in Kigali would end in a stalemate, but APR had other ideas.

Albert Ngabo scored in stoppage-time to give his side an advantage ahead of the second leg in Lubumbashi in two weeks time.

Former African champions from Tunisia, Club Africain staged a comeback to claim a one-all home draw despite going down to nine men in the first half.

The 14-time Algerian champions JS Kabylie looked set to claim an away victory thank to an Idriss Ech-Chergui goal in the first half.

But Malian Mohammed Traore hit the back of the net with an equaliser three minutes from time.

Club Africain were dealt a major blow midway through the first half after the defensive duo of Khaled Souissi and Cameroonian Alexis Enam Mendomo were sent off within 5 minutes of each other.

In Tripoli, Al Ittihad took the lead after 58 minutes courtesy of a strike by striker Ahmed Zuway.

The visiting Difaa El Jadida of Morocco struck back 20 minutes later through Malian Cheick Oumar Dabo.

Six-time African champions Al Ahly of Egypt will play their first match in the African Champions League this weekend against Zimbabwe's Gunners.

In Lusaka, home team Zanaco will favour their chances against Ivory Coast's Asec Mimosas, who failed to reach the group stage of the annual competition last year.

Zanaco coach Wedson Nyirenda, said although he respects the high-profile Ivorian champions, he will be gunning for victory on Saturday.

"We respect them, they are a big team, but we just have to win our game and then finish it off at their place," said Nyirenda, whose team advanced to this stage after they beat Uganda's URA 4-1 on aggregate.

Last year, the dream of Al Ahly of Egypt to win their seventh Champions League trophy were dashed by debutants Nigeria's Kano Pillars in the third round.

The Cairo Red Devils have undergone major changes since then.

Portuguese coach Manuel Jose left for Angola to be replaced by long-time assistant, Hossam Al-Badri.

Al Ahly's top stars Mohamed Aboutrika and Mohamed Barakat have been dogged with injuries.

Ahly's opponents, Gunners of Zimbabwe beat minnows Mafunzo from Zanzibar home and away in the first round with Nolman Mloto getting on the score board in both games.

Tunisian champions Esperance only just avoided an upset at the hands of East End Lions of Sierra Leone thanks to a late winner by their Nigeria international striker Michael Eneramo in Tunis.

Just like the first leg match, scores were tied on 2-2 in the reverse fixture before Eneramo found target.

Africa Sports of Ivory Coast are at home to Sudan'sAl Hilal.

While Raja Casablanca from Morocco host Angolan champions Petro Atletico.

Cash-strapped Africa Sports will be under pressure to get a result at the Felix Houphouet-Boigny Stadium in Abidjan on Sunday against Al Hilal.

The Sudanese club, who went out in the semis last year, have been one of the most consistent teams in this competition in recent times.

In Morocco, three-time champions Raja Casablanca have experience in giant international goalkeeper Tarik El Jarmouni and youth in 18-year-old Malian midfielder Souleymane Demba.

Demba, who was born in Zambia, made his Champions League debut against Fello Star of Guinea in Conakry last month.

The second leg matches take place in a fortnight.

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see also
Big guns struggle in Champs League
14 Feb 10 |  African
African Champions League Draw
09 Dec 09 |  African
Mazembe clinch Champs Lge title
07 Nov 09 |  African

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