The groups for the CAF Champions League and the playoff round ties for the CAF Confederation Cup will be revealed today when the Confederation of African Football holds a glittering draw in Egypt.
This event will take place at the Hilton Pyramids Resort, 6th October City just outside of Cairo. The 16 teams which have progressed into the group phase of the Champions League are arranged into pots according to their ranking (based on performances in CAF competitions in recent years), with one team drawn from each of the four divisions and placed into a group (four groups of four teams each).
In the Confederation Cup, the 16 teams which have progressed through the first two preliminary rounds will be paired against a team which lost in the second preliminary round of the Champions League. Again a seeding system is derived using CAF rankings.
However, the exact line-up for each draw is yet to be 100 percent finalised as CAF’s decision regards to the Champions League last 32 tie between Zamalek (Egypt) and Generation Foot (Senegal) is being awaited as at press time.
The Senegalese team held a 2-1 lead from the first leg of their tie against the White Knights, but refused to fulfil the return game on the final weekend of September when CAF, at late notice, shifted the date and venue of the return game.
This led to a 3-0 win being awarded to Zamalek, who have been bracketed into the Champions League draw as a result, but CAF said they are investigating the issue, with Generation Foot threatening to take the issue to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
Regardless, the draw promises to be an engrossing affair, as we find out the fate of continental heavyweights such as current Champions League title holders Esperance de Tunis, Egyptian giants Zamalek and DR Congo’s imperious TP Mazembe, right down to a club like TS Galaxy, a second-tier South African side which has enjoyed a fairytale run into the playoff round of the Confederation Cup and stand just 180 minutes away from the lucrative group stages.
GoTv Boxing Night Mini Excites Boxers
The introduction of GoTv Boxing Night Mini which will debut on November 16 at Mobolaji Johnson Sports Complex, Rowe Park, Yaba in Lagos has sparked excitement among boxers.
The decision to introduce GoTv Boxing Night Mini was announced recently by the organisers, Flykite Productions, who said it was intended to get boxers involved in many fights.
According to Flykite Productions, GoTv Boxing Night Mini, which will hold more frequently at various venues, will give boxers more opportunities to fight and build their fight profiles.
It will in the end increase their eligibility for international titles.
Several boxers have commended the sponsors for increasing their opportunities to fight, saying many talented ones seeking avenues would benefit from GoTv Boxing Night Mini.
Kamaru “Slow Poison” Aremu, a boxer who has yet to make his professional bout, said that his chances of getting an opportunity to fight had been boosted.
“I like GoTv Boxing Night and I have tried to be on the bill a few times, but unfortunately did not succeed.
“With GoTv Boxing Night Mini, which will hold more regularly than the big ones, I believe that boxers in my shoes will have opportunities to fight and also feature at the main event,” he said.
A similar sentiment was expressed by Sikiru “Omo Iya Eleja” Shogbesan, who has had one fight at GoTv Boxing Night, but was seeking more to boost his fight profile.
According to him, the competition for spots on the bill at the main event is stiff, making it tough to be selected.
“GoTv is about the only serious sponsors of boxing in Nigeria. It means getting to fight at the main event is tough.
“But with the mini edition, boxers stand to have more opportunities, as GoTv Boxing Night Mini will hold more frequently,” he said.
The West African Boxing Union (WABU) Lightweight champion, Rilwan “Real One” Oladosu, who is billed to fight at the maiden edition, said the tournament was coming at the right time.
Reactions Trail Super Eagles, Brazil Friendly Match
Reactions have continued to trail the Nigeria Super Eagles’ performance against the Brazilian National team in a grade A international friendly game.
The encounter was held at Singapore National Stadium, Kallang, last Sunday, it ended one all draw.
In his reaction, Hon Otonye Uche said the Eagles’ performance was credible, saying that their future is bright.
He explained that fielding young players against a good side like Brazil is a sign of improvement.
Uche commended both players and technical crew, added that with such impressive performance they will do well in 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON)
“If only they can keep these set of players they will do well in future competitions “ Uche said.
Bariledum Leema, a sports analyst in Port Harcourt, also lauded Eagles’ impressive performance.
According to him, what Eagles need now is a quality coach.
“The future of the Super Eagles of Nigeria is bright. They will even do better, but what they need now is a good coach” Leema said.
He further explained that, even without some important players during the match the Eagles gave a good account of themselves.
He described the game as a huge improvement from Nigeria 3-0 defeat to the Brazilian in a friendly match in Abuja in June 2003.
Go Round FC’s Coach Ready For Challenge
Justin Smart was handed the mandate to lead Go Round FC in the Nigeria National League (NNL) this season and he has said he is ready for the challenge.
Smart was assistant to Willy Udube in the 2018/ 19 NPFL season that saw the team relegated to the lower division, but has now been moved up to Head coach following the departure of his former boss to Abia Warriors.
After two weeks of intensive pre-season training, Smart has spoken up regarding what he has done so far and what is left to do before the season kicks off.
“The last two weeks have been intensive for us because the club decided to embark on open screening exercise, first for people of Ogba Egbema Ndoni origin and another one open for anyone that wanted to try out.
“After the first one week, I was able to pick a couple of players from the area that I think are good enough. I was supposed to pick five but from what I have seen of them I am very sure at least two of them will be good enough for the first-team next season,” Smart said.
“In the general screening session I also saw a couple of players I can bank on for the league so it has been all well and good for us within the last two weeks.”
Players and those invited by the coaches from other clubs will begin to arrive in Omoku as the team will begin their final lap of preparations for the new season.
“I have a lot of prospects that I invited from other clubs. Then there are the returning players and then those we got during the screening, so I believe we will get players we need for the league,” Smart insists.
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