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CAF CL: Day 1 results as Botswana's Jwaneng Galaxy steal points from Wydad in Morocco

Yassine Meriah of Esperance Tunis celebrates goal with teammates during the CAF Champions League 2023/24 match between Esperance Tunis and Etoile Sahel held at Hammadi Agrebi Stadium in Rades, Tunisia on 25 November 2023 ©Mehrez Toujani/BackpagePix
CAF CL: Day 1 results as Botswana's Jwaneng Galaxy steal points from Wydad in Morocco

Day 1 of the group phase saw the results of 7 of the 8 scheduled group matches. After Friday's early games, with victories for Pyramids and CR Bélouizdad, 6 matches were on the program for Saturday November 25. ES Sahel, Petro Luanda and Al Ahly won on home soil. Botswana's Jwaneng Galaxy scored the day's biggest win, beating Wydad on home soil. Simba and ASEC shared the points.Mamelodi Sundows-Nouadhibou will round off Day 1. It is scheduled for Sunday.

Group B: ASEC earn a point in Tanzania

ASEC d'Abidjan earned a draw against Simba of Tanzania on home soil (1-1). In the 1st half, Simba slightly dominated proceedings, with more highlights and greater possession. The Tanzanians opened the scoring in the 44th minute through right-winger Saidi Ntibazonkiza. ASEC came out of the locker room with better intentions, and dominated proceedings in the second half, storming into their opponents' half. Their efforts were rewarded in the 77th minute with a Serge Pokou goal.

This goal was the wake-up call for Simba, who dominated but failed to score to win the match. The match was fairly evenly split, with possession and stats all equal. Simba (52% possession, 8 shots, 4 on target); ASEC (48% possession, 11 shots, 2 on target).

Jwaneng Galaxy triumph over Wydad in Casablanca

Jwaneng Galaxy pulled off the feat of this 1st day of the group phase with victory over Wydad in Morocco (1-0). Botswana's Jwaneng Galaxy opened the scoring against Morocco's Wydad at home against the run of play. Their only shot on target of the first half came from Thabang Vicent Sesinyi in the 33rd minute. Wydad meanwhile had 79% possession, 12 shots including 6 on target and failed to score in the first half. Wydad's dominance continued in the second half, but the Botswanans regrouped defensively, conceding very few chances.

In Pool B, Jwaneng are alone at the top of the table with 3 points. ASEC and Simba are 2nd and 3rd with 1 point each. Wydad are bottom with 0 points.

Group C: Petro Luanda wins against harmless Al-Hilal

Petro Luanda won by the narrowest of margins against Al-Hilal (1-0). The 1st half saw little action between the 2 teams, with only 1 shot on target. But the Angolans were clinical, scoring on their only shot on target for a total of 5 attempted shots. Ignacio Miguel scored in the 37th minute. The Angolans also had possession 62% of the time, compared with 38% for the Sudanese visitors.Al-Hilal only attempted 2 shots in the first 45 minutes. Al-Hilal didn't bounce back in the second half to reverse the result. They only had one shot on target for the whole of the second half, to prove their inoffensiveness. Meanwhile, Petro de Luanda failed to capitalize on their superiority on the day. With 4 shots, 3 of which were on target in the 2nd half, the team failed to score a second goal.


ES Tunis secure home advantage against ES du Sahel

The match between the 2 Tunisian teams lived up to its promise, despite being 0-0 at half-time. The 2 teams gave blow for blow. As proof, each team attempted 9 shots, both of them hitting the target 3 times. Possession shifted slightly in favor of home team ES Tunis (56%). Esperance de Tunis made the difference within 4 minutes in the second half to wrap up the match. Yan Sasse opened the scoring in the 60th minute. His team-mate Yassine Meriah doubled the lead in the 64th minute from the penalty spot, sealing the match. The second half was more tightly contested, with Esperance firing 6 shots on target and only 3 on target, while Etoile Sportive had 9 shots on target and only one on target.

Esperance de Tunis and Petro Luanda, with 3 points each, got off to a better start and occupy the top 2 places in Group C. Al-Hilal and Etoile Sportive du Sahel are 3rd and 4th respectively without a point to their name.


Group D: Al Ahly uphold the hierarchy

Al Ahly won (2-0) against Medeama of Ghana. The match was dominated from start to finish by the defending champions, even if they were slow to score. In the 1st half, Ghana's Medeama resisted the Egyptians' waves to keep the score at 0-0. Al Ahly dominated proceedings, with 71% possession, 13 shots and 3 on target, but failed to find the net. Medeama had just one shot on target from 3 attempts.

In the second half, Al Ahly took control and scored 3 goals. The 1st at the 66th minute by Kahraba, the second at the 75th minute by Hussein El Shahat, and the last goal at the 88th minute by Salah Mohsen. They had many more chances in the second half.

They took 13 shots on goal in the second half, hitting the target 8 times, while their opponents hit the target 2 times out of 4 attempts.

With this victory, Al Ahly now have the same number of points as CR Bélouizdad. The 2 clubs lead Pool D with 3 points, while Medeama and Young Africains close the table with no points.

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