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Merseyside derby ends in stalemate

Liverpool were left to regret two large chances by Mohamed Salah as Everton held out for a – draw in the Merseyside derby on Sunday.

Jurgen Klopp’s men now trail champions Manchester City by a point at the leading of the EPL League with 9 games remaining.

Salah was denied by Everton goalie Jordan Pickford and a very last-ditch obstacle by Michael Keane possibly side of half-time as
Liverpool dropped points for the fourth time in six league games.

Fabinho was also guilty of losing a major opportunity 21 minutes from
time as Lucas Digne cleared when the Brazilian took an age to control
Virgil van Dijk’s knockdown.

Everton remain without having a win in the Merseyside derby stretching back
to 2010, but may have accomplished ample to halt their neighborhood rivals from
successful the title for the initially time in 29 decades.

Salah has now scored just after in his earlier 6 matches and squandered by a
distance the greatest opportunity for possibly facet from the kind of predicament he completed with simplicity in a 44-goal debut season at Anfield previous 12 months.

Pickford was at fault for Liverpool‘s 96th minute winner when the sides very last fulfilled in December, but the England number one went some way to
producing amends by standing tall to block as Salah bore down on goal
in advance of Seamus Coleman threw himself in the way of a adhere to-up try
from Jordan Henderson.

That was a rare glimpse of goal in a very first-half which created plenty of enjoyment and environment but minimal in the way of goalmouth
incident.

Everton have endured a disappointing season soon after expending major in the
summer season to back again Marco Silva and their deficiency of high-quality on the ball confirmed irrespective of their motivation and want to close Liverpool down.The hosts at minimum opened the second-50 percent with a little bit additional urgency, Dominic Calvert-Lewin growing to meet up with an early Lucas Digne corner, with a header that was saved easily by Alisson Becker.

At the other end, Salah spurned yet another prospect when the ball broke
his way off Kurt Zouma, but the Egyptian took a large contact and permitted
Keane to make a spectacular recovery tackle.

Klopp experienced seen plenty of by just right after the hour mark and introduced on James Milner and Roberto Firmino, recovered from his ankle
damage, in a bid to turn one point into three.

The Brazilian almost made an prompt impression, marauding ahead with
Salah, but his cross proved a small long for Sadio Mane who could only
head again throughout goal harmlessly.

Van Dijk was again peerless in his defensive responsibilities and practically set up the winner experienced Fabinho been sharper to fire home the Dutchman’s knock down.Roared on by an more and more vocal home crowd, Everton also created some late odds with a cross from substitute Richarlison coming within just
inches of obtaining the sliding Bernard.

Nevertheless, for the third time in Liverpool‘s last four matches the game
finished scoreless to hand City the initiative in the title race.

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Liverpool’s Origi sinks Everton with freak late goal

A freak injury-time goal from Liverpool substitute Divock Origi settled the Merseyside derby and held Jurgen Klopp’s unbeaten team record on the heels of EPL League pacesetters Manchester City on Sunday.

The 1- victory prolonged Liverpool’s unbeaten sequence in Merseyside derbies in the EPL League to 16 games though the manner of the profitable goal made this a single of the more unforgettable of those games.

In the 96th minute, Virgil van Dijk mishit a hopeful, desperate shot in the way of the Everton goal with the exertion ballooning into the air and the defender turning his back in disgust.

But Everton goalie Jordan Pickford struggled to judge the ball as it dropped from the Anfield night sky.

With the ball searching as if it may strike the cross-bar, the England man pushed the ball upwards and presented Origi with a uncomplicated headed end into an open net.

Liverpool believed they experienced received the game a few minutes earlier when van Dijk headed on a corner and Origi turned a difficult likelihood on to the Everton bar, with home supporters interesting for a place kick soon after Daniel Sturridge’s observe-up shot appeared to strike Gylfi Sigurdsson on the arm.

But how the one hundredth Anfield league derby however stood goalless at that stage was a surprise with the to start with fifty percent, primarily, manufacturing multiple chances for both of those teams.

A set-piece presented Everton with the game’s to start with likelihood with just 4 minutes long gone as Lucas Digne swung in a effectively-labored free-kick and defender Yerry Mina rose from a group of players but noticed his try fly effectively wide.

Everton’s other good to start with fifty percent likelihood owed more to spirited defending than bad ending as Theo Walcott headed across goal and Andre Gomes appeared specific to nod into the Liverpool net from close range.

In some way, goalie Alisson made an amazing reflex block and, soon after the ball rebounded against Gomes’s head and appeared destined to trickle about the goalline, it was Liverpool defender Joe Gomez who made a outstanding previous-ditch clearance to hack the ball to safety.

– Liverpool operate –Nevertheless Liverpool, predictably, appeared in the mood to keep on a report that has seen them unbeaten in this home fixture for 19 decades.

Xherdan Shaqiri squandered his team’s most effective opening, performed clean by by Mo Salah soon after 33 minutes but getting an extra touch that authorized Pickford to block his exertion.

The tempo did not lessen soon after the restart. Salah, searching to score for a third consecutive league game, curled a shot just huge from 20 yards and Sadio Mane chased on to a Firmino by ball that Seamus Coleman failed to offer with, only to slide his shot wide.

Liverpool ended up beginning to dominate even more than experienced been in the scenario in the to start with fifty percent, Salah, yet again, developing an opening as he passed back to the edge of the area for Mane to overlook the target.

But Marco Silva released youthful winger Ademola Lookman off the Everton bench and his side’s attacking danger instantly enhanced.

Shortly, Sigurdsson was forcing Alisson into a regimen save from lengthy assortment in advance of Lookman set up Bernard for a shot which the Brazilian sent flying just wide of the suitable-hand upright from 20 yards.

By the 74th minute, Klopp was desperate for a modify and brought on Sturridge to exchange Salah, who did not look happy at being changed.

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United physically and mentally exhausted, insists Mourinho

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho blamed a draining week for their disappointing effectiveness as Manchester City moved again up the Premier League with a convincing 3-1 win in Sunday’s derby at the Etihad.

Early goals in each individual half from David Silva and Sergio Aguero place City in command and Ilkay Gundogan condemned United to a fourth league defeat of the season right after Anthony Martial’s spot kick give the people hope.

City are now twelve points crystal clear of their nearby rivals right after leapfrogging Liverpool to shift two forward at the top, with Mourinho’s men eighth.

Martial’s reply was United’s only shot on target as City confirmed why they are champions and are on class to complete over the Red Devils for a sixth straight season considering the fact that Alex Ferguson retired.

“You can go for stats, which is the way folks who do not understand football, analyse football,” protested Mourinho.

“I do not go for stats, I go for what I felt and what I view in the game and the game was there right until minute 80 some thing.”

Mourinho’s men arrived from behind to win 2-1 at Bournemouth and Juventus late on in the past week, whilst City smashed Southampton and Shakhtar Donetsk for 6.

And Mourinho claimed his aspect, also shorn of Paul Pogba through damage, were being physically and mentally exhausted.

“In a week wherever they enjoy two 6-, 6-1 victories, comfortable, no tension, no mental work, anything nice and effortless and we performed two matches away, difficult ones, wherever the second 1 was like a final for us against 1 of the ideal groups in Europe,” he added.

“In a game that demanded anything we experienced to give not just physically, but mentally.”

Pep Guardiola’s aspect have now won eleven and drawn 1 of their final twelve games with the only blip in that operate coming in a – draw away to Liverpool — 1 of only two fixtures they dropped in the Premier League final season.

The other was at home to United when City spurned the probability to seal the title against their nearby rivals in April by blowing a 2- half-time lead to lose 3-2.

City settle score

City settled that score and ensured that if they are to be denied in their quest to be the very first aspect in a 10 years to keep the Premier League, the problem is likely to arrive from Liverpool or London instead than throughout Manchester.

Liverpool, Chelsea, Tottenham and Arsenal, they have numbers to be champions, not just Man City,” explained Guardiola, who extended his have individual file against Mourinho to just 5 defeats in 22 matches.

“The depth of our squad allows a large amount since every person appreciates they have to be at a level if they want to remain there.”

Inspite of an upturn in outcomes in recent months to dampen speculation encompassing Mourinho’s foreseeable future, United have still consistently started bit by bit and were being all over again punished early on.

Bernardo Silva was the supplier for his namesake to sign-up his seventh goal of the season with a shot that experienced just far too substantially electric power for De Gea on twelve minutes.

United did at least stem City’s stream as the half wore on and the hosts did not threaten all over again right until Aguero fired into the aspect-netting just in advance of half-time.

“The very first half was not so very good,” extra Guardiola. “We performed like we do not want to lose the ball, but not the intention to attack or do some thing.”

Handed a slightly greater angle 3 minutes right after the split, Aguero made no blunder as he performed a 1-two with Riyad Mahrez and blasted higher past De Gea to shift out on his have as the Premier League’s too scorer with 8 goals.

Nevertheless, just as City threatened to operate riot, their momentum was halted when with his very first involvement considering the fact that coming on as a substitute Romelu Lukaku was upended by Ederson for a United spot kick, which Martial slotted in to score for the fifth straight league game.

On the other hand, it was City who still seemed the a lot more likely to score and they sealed all 3 points in style.

Gundogan concluded off a forty four-pass shift that dragged United all around the pitch, slotting home 5 minutes from time.

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Rabah Madjer to attend this evening’s Algiers derby


Algerian head coach, Rabah Madjer during the FIFA World Cup 2018 qualifying soccer match between Algeria and Nigeria at Chahid-Hamlaoui stadium in Constantine, Algeria, 10 November 2017.

by
Graeme Jackson

Tuesday Nov 28, 2017. 17:00


Algeria national team coach Rabah Madjer will attend this evening’s Ligue 1 capital derby clash between MC Alger and USM Alger.

The match will be staged at the 5 July Stadium in Algiers and sees hosts and fourth-placed MCA looking to make up ground on league leaders CS Constantine, while USMA are looking to lift themselves out of a lowly 12th place.

Madjer’s assistants, Djamel Menad and Meziane Ighil, have been travelling all around Algeria attending domestic Ligue 1 matches to scout players for the Fennec Foxes, and they will also be in attendance for the match.

Le Buteur reports that the likes of USMA’s Rafik Chafai, Oussama Darfalou and Zoheir Abdellaoui, as well as MCA’s Rachid Bouhenna, Sofiane Bendebka and Hichem Nekkache will be under the microscope of the Fennec Foxes’ coaches.

Madjer is reportedly in search of “rare birds” as he seeks to strengthen the Algerian national team following their disastrous 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign.



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Absa Premiership wrap: Soweto derby ends 0-0, leaders Baroka suffer first loss


Daniel Cardoso of Kaizer Chiefs clears ball from Thamsanqa Gabuza of Orlando Pirates during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 match between Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates at FNB Stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa on 21 October 2017 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

by
Graeme Jackson

Monday Oct 23, 2017. 09:30


Baroka FC suffered their first loss in the Absa Premiership this season but continue to lead the log after another thrilling weekend round of matches.

Saturday’s feature match was the Soweto derby between Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates, though it was an entirely predictable result, as the teams played out a goalless stalemate. It was a match which only really sparked to life in the second half, but neither side did enough to earn more than a share of the spoils.

Elsewhere, on the same afternoon, Golden Arrows needed a late goal from Thomas Chideu to retain their unbeaten record, as they were held 2-2 at home by Polokwane City to record a sixth draw from nine matches this season.

The three evening games made for fascinating viewing, as AmaZulu claimed a shock win over Mamelodi Sundowns. Goals from ‘golden oldies’ Siyabonga Nomvethe and Mabhuti Khenyeza saw Usuthu hand the Brazilians a third successive home defeat this season.

Platinum Stars continue to show gradual signs of improvement as they secured a 1-1 draw away to in-form Free State Stars, while Ajax Cape Town claimed a much-needed win – 2-1 at home to Bloemfontein Celtic – thanks to goals from Bantu Mzwakali and Tashreeq Morris.

Sunday’s headline result was Bidvest Wits defeating Baroka FC 1-0 in the Limpopo province thanks to Vincent Pule’s first-half strike. It was Bakgaga’s first defeat of the season and saw the Clever Boys move out of the relegation zone.

In the Eastern Cape, Chippa United came from a goal down to beat Cape Town City 2-1 thanks to second-half goals from Abel Mabaso and Katlego Mashego. The result broke a six-match winless streak for the Clever Boys and handed the Citizens a second straight loss.

The Absa Premiership will return with a full round of matches on the midweek dates of October 31 to November 1.

Absa Premiership weekend results

Saturday 21 October

Kaizer Chiefs 0-0 Orlando Pirates

Golden Arrows 2-2 Polokwane City

Mamelodi Sundowns 1-2 AmaZulu

Free State Stars 1-1 Platinum Stars

Ajax Cape Town 2-1 Bloemfontein Celtic

Sunday 22 October

Baroka 0-1 Bidvest Wits

Chippa 2-1 Cape Town City



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Soweto Derby – Kaizer Chiefs 0-0 Orlando Pirates – As it happened – ABSA Premiership 2017/18


by
Graeme Jackson

Saturday Oct 21, 2017. 17:17


Welcome to coverage of the Absa Premiership Soweto Derby between Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates from the FNB Stadium.

Commentary:

All times CAT

90+4′ – Full time – It ends in a predictable draw, a fair reflection of the game. Both teams hit the woodwork, neither really did enough to earn all three points.

90+3′ – But Tshabalala’s free kick is headed clear.

90+2′ – Yellow card – Mobara with a stupid challenge to give away a free kick in a dangerous position right at the death.

90+1′ – There will be three minutes of added time.

90′ – Pirates with a corner kick in the final minute of regulation time, but they don’t really test Chiefs’ defence.

87′ – Yellow card – Tshabalala booked for a late challenge on Sarr.

86′ – Substitution – The final change sees Ryan Moon replace Parker upfront for Chiefs.

85′ – Pirates with a corner kick from Makola, but Mathoho heads clear.

83′ – Chiefs ending the match strongly, they look to have plenty of legs left. Pirates are tired and weary after bossing most of the game.

81′ – Substitution – Thembinkosi Lorch replaces the excellent Qalinge, who finally ran out of steam after a great performance.

80′ – Great chance for Chiefs! Maluleka crosses from the right to pick out an unmarked Cardoso at the back post, but he volleys over!

77′ – Yellow card – Makola goes through Meyiwa and is deservedly booked.

76′ – Chiefs with a free kick in a great attacking position… Tshabalala looks to shoot on goal, but only hits the wall.

74′ – Substitution – Wiseman Meyiwa replaces Ngezana for Chiefs.

73′ – Yellow card – Pirates have the ball in the back of the net as Morrison turns home Makola’s cross, but the forward used his hand and is rightly booked.

71′ – Tshabalala crosses from a free kick, Katsande heads on target… great one-handed save from Sandilands! He hasn’t had much to do, but he was sharp to the danger that time!

68′ – Molangoane crosses from the right, Parker tries an overhead kick which doesn’t come off. Goal kick to Pirates.

66′ – Maela floats in a cross from the left, Gabuza gets up to win the header but can’t direct his effort on target.

64′ – Substitution – Rakhale off and Thamsanqa Gabuza on in Pirates’ second change.

63′ – Chiefs with a sustained attack which ends with Tshabalala shooting toward the near post and Sandilands saving. But it should have been so much more for the Amakhosi, they had Bucs on the rack just then!

61′ – Past the hour mark, the tempo has risen after those substitutions – both teams now have more energy and movement upfront.

58′ – Qalinge shoots on goal direct from a free kick, punched away by Khune.

57′ – Yellow card – Ngezana booked for a clumsy challenge.

56′ – Substitution – Pirates’ first change sees Kutumela make way for Bernard Morrison.

55′ – Makola chips a ball over the top to find the run of Qalinge, who tries an acrobatic volley and rattles the crossbar! So close for Bucs!
Substitution – Chiefs’ first change sees Gustavo Paez replace Ekstein.

53′ – Tshabalala with a good delivery from the set piece, but no chance created for Amakhosi.

52′ – Rare chance for Chiefs as Zulu crosses from the left and Parker looks to head on goal… the ball loops out of play for a corner kick.

51′ – Back to the same pattern as the first half: plenty of the ball for Pirates, but Chiefs able to defend quite comfortably.

48′ – Parker picks up a loose ball and shoots from range, but his effort is high and wide.

46′ – Back underway in the second half, no changes from either team at the break.

45+2′ – Half time – Goalless at the break. Pirates have enjoyed most of the ball, but have had little penetration. Chiefs look dangerous from set pieces and will hope to win the chess battle in the second stanza.

45′ – Qalinge picks out Makola with a great back-heel, but the Pirates midfielder then shoots into the side netting!

44′ – Yellow card – Sarr cautioned for a trip on Katsande in midfield.

43′ – Pirates work a corner to see Rakhale shoot through bodies from outside the ‘D’ of the box and Khune gets down to make a fine save low to his right!

41′ – Makola shoots from range… again not on target. Chiefs still keeping Bucs at arm’s length with relative ease.

39′ – Mathoho with a good challenge to stop Matlaba in his tracks. Now Rakhale gets a curling shot away, but it’s an easy save for Khune.

36′ – Yellow card – Katsande cautioned for a foul in midfield, he’ll have to tread carefully for the rest of the match.

35′ – Good work from Cardoso to hold off Kutumela. The Chiefs defence hasn’t really been tested thus far.

33′ – Matlaba shoots from range… high and wide.

31′ – Rakhale with a good cross from the right, but it’s just too high for Kutumela to get onto.

29′ – Maluleka crosses from the set piece, Ngezana wins the header at the back post and hits the opposite upright with his effort! So close to a second goal in as many games for the youngster!

28′ – Tshabalala wins a free kick wide on the right for Chiefs. What can the Amakhosi create from this?

26′ – Maela with a fine cross from the left, but Pirates don’t have the numbers in Chiefs’ box to take advantage.

24′ – Past the midway point of the first half, still goalless at FNB Stadium between Chiefs and Pirates.

22′ – Parker with a couple of touches in Pirates’ box, but he’s quickly crowded out by Chabalala and Mobara.

20′ – Qalinge seeing a lot of the ball and doing a great job to link play for Pirates, but they need a little more speed and incisiveness to trouble the Amakhosi.

17′ – Chiefs used similar tactics away to Mamelodi Sundowns in midweek and came away with an impressive 2-1 victory.

16′ – Plenty of the ball for Bucs, but they don’t really look threatening. Chiefs will be quite comfortable with the way the game is going.

14′ – Yellow card – Kutumela receives a silly booking for a challenge on Khune.

12′ – Makola with a long-range drive… high and wide, no worry for Khune.

11′ – Tshabalala plays a great reverse pass to put Parker in on goal, but Sandilands was quick off his line to smother the ball!

10′ – A sustained spell of possession for Pirates ends with Qalinge crossing from the right, only for Khune to make an easy catch.

7′ – Chiefs with an attacking free kick which takes a couple of deflections before bouncing into the hands of goalkeeper Sandilands, who is playing in his first Soweto Derby.

5′ – The corner is initially cleared by Zulu and Chiefs go on to defend solidly in the face of some Pirates pressure, before Maluleka wins a free kick near his own penalty area.

4′ – Qalinge tries from long range and his skidding shot is turned away for a corner kick by Khune!

2′ – Qalinge with an early piece of showboating to get the crowd cheering…

1′ – Kick-off – We are underway at FNB Stadium! Chiefs wear gold with black trim, while Pirates are in black with white trim.

15h25 – Thando Ndzandzeka is the referee for today’s match. We are just a few minutes away from kick-off…

15h15 – There’s little to separate these teams as they come into this clash: Pirates are third on the log with 13 points, while Chiefs are fourth on 12 points. A draw would seem the likely result and history backs this up: the teams have drawn their last three league meetings in succession, while seven of the last 10 have ended in stalemates.

15h00 – Half an hour to kick-off, here are the starting XIs:

Kaizer Chiefs: Itumeleng Khune, Siyabonga Ngezana, Daniel Cardoso, Erick Mathoho, Philani Zulu, Joseph Molangoane, Willard Katsande, George Maluleka, Hendrick Ekstein, Siphiwe Tshabalala, Bernard Parker

Orlando Pirates: Wayne Sandilands, Thabo Matlaba, Justice Chabalala, Ntsikelelo Nyauza, Innocent Maela, Thabo Qalinga, Abbubaker Mobara, Issa Sarr, Mpho Makola, Thabo Rakhale, Thabiso Kutumela



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Chiefs, Pirates set for sizzling Soweto derby – ABSA Premiership 2017/18


George Maluleka and Willard Katsande of Kaizer Chiefs reacts to Bernard Morrison of Orlando Pirates during 2017 Carling Black Label Champion Cup match between Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates at FNB Stadium, Johannesburg South Africa on 29 July 2017 ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

by
Graeme Jackson

Friday Oct 20, 2017. 14:00


Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates will renew their famous derby rivalry in the Absa Premiership when they meet at the FNB Stadium on 21 October 2017, kick-off at 15h30.

Chiefs come into the match on the back of a 2-1 away win over Mamelodi Sundowns on October 17. The victory, which was secured by goals from Siyabonga Ngezana and Bernard Parker, was a major relief for under-pressure coach Steve Komphela.

However, home matches have not been kind to the Amakhosi thus far in the 2017/18 season: their four turns as hosts have yet to produce a league win and include surprise losses at the hands of SuperSport United and Baroka FC.

Pirates have gone three league matches without a win after they were held 1-1 at home by bottom-of-the-log Platinum Stars on October 18. The result saw the Sea Robbers lose their 100 percent record at home this season and continue their relatively lean run in terms of goal scoring – Milutin Sredojevic’s side have netted just seven times in eight league matches.

The Buccaneers have also yet to record an away win this season, picking up just three points from four games on the road. Their last away result was a 2-2 draw at Polokwane City before the recent international break.

In head-to-head stats, Chiefs and Pirates have met in 63 league matches since 1985. The Amakhosi have claimed 24 wins compared to 13 for the Buccaneers, while no less than 26 encounters have ended in draws. The team in gold and black have won 13 of their 30 home matches in the rivalry, suffering six defeats in the process.

Last season the teams shared the spoils in both league meetings: they drew 0-0 in Pirates’ home match, while the return game with Chiefs as hosts ended 1-1 after an own goal from Tsepo Masilela and a strike from Joseph Molangoane. The teams have played to three successive draws and have shared the spoils in seven of their last 10 meetings in the top flight.

Chiefs’ line-up from their 2-1 win over Sundowns on October 17: Khune, Cardoso, Mathoho, Ngezana, Zulu, Katsande, Maluleka, Ekstein (Zuma 78′), Tshabalala (Meyiwa 89′), Molangoane, Parker (Chirambadare 90+4′).

Pirates’ line-up from their 1-1 draw with Stars on October 18: Sandilands, Mobara, Mtshali, Nyauza, Maela, Matlaba, Nyatama (Kutumela 46′), Qalinge (Foster 83′), Lorch (Shonga 62′), Makola, Gabuza.



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Urban Warriors suffer Ikapa Derby defeat


Lyle Lakay of Cape Town City shields ball from Rheece Evans of Ajax Cape Town during the 2017/18 Absa Premiership football match between Ajax Cape Town and Cape Town City at Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town on 30 September 2017 ©Gavin Barker/BackpagePix

by
Bertin Basson

Saturday Sep 30, 2017. 17:10


Ajax Cape Town were unable to bring an end to their winless run against Cape Town City, as the Citizens emerged 2-0 winners in an Absa Premiership clash at Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.

Following intense build-up to the third installment of the Ikapa Derby, the Urban Warriors failed in their efforts to grab the bragging rights over their fierce crosstown rivals.

Goals from Victor Obinna Nsofor and Judas Moseamedi guiding the visitors to victory.

Following a cagey start the clash, Rodrick Kabwe registered the first shot in anger with 26 minutes on the clock. Sage Stephens with a spectacular save to deny the Zambia international.

Obinna Nsofor duly opened the scoring for the Citizens for his first goal in South Africa’s top-flight, eight minutes later. The burly Nigerian bundling the ball over the line after brushing off two defenders.

The visitors 1-0 up at the interval.

Ajax Cape Town head coach Stanley Menzo duly introduced Ejike Uzoenyi and Masilake Phohlongo after the break, in an attempt to turn things around.

But, it was not to be for the Urban Warriors as Moseamedi made sure of all three points for the Citizens in the 88th minute of the clash.

Ajax Cape Town (0) 0

Cape Town City (0) 2 (Obinna 34′ Moseamedi 88′)

Ajax Cape Town: Petersen; Evans, Nhlapo, Booysen, Lebusa – Pietersen (Uzoenyi 55′), Malepe, Margeman (Mdabuka 80′) – Kabwe (Phohlongo 58′), Mosadi, Morris

Cape Town City: Stephens; Seedat, Johannes, Fielies, Mkhize – Matsi, Nodada – Lakay, Patosi (Modise 65′), Martin (Edmilson 81′) – Obinna (Moseamedi 46′)



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Ajax, City set for Cape Town derby


Ndiviwe Mdabuka of Ajax Cape Town evades challenge from Robyn Johannes of Cape Town City FC during the Absa Premiership 2016/17 football match between Ajax Cape Town and Cape Town City FC at Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town on 11 February 2017 ©Chris Ricco/BackpagePix

by
Graeme Jackson

Friday Sep 29, 2017. 09:45


Ajax Cape Town and Cape Town City will meet for an Absa Premiership derby at the Cape Town Stadium on 30 September 2017, kick-off at 15h00.

Ajax played to their second draw of the season when they held Baroka FC 2-2 in Polokwane on September 23. An away draw against one of the league’s form teams is a respectable result for the Cape side, though they will feel it was two points dropped after they twice let a lead slip.

The Urban Warriors are unbeaten at home so far this season, having drawn with Golden Arrows in the opening round and beaten Polokwane City earlier this month, and coach Stanley Menzo will want at least another point from this encounter.

Cape Town City snapped their losing streak at two games when they defeated Polokwane City 1-0 at home on September 22. It was a controversial win for Benni McCarthy’s side, who needed a debatable penalty deep into injury time from Lehlohonolo Majoro to claim all three points – though they did have a perfectly legitimate goal incorrectly ruled out for offside.

The Citizens have lost two of their three away league matches so far this season – though as the match is being played at their home base of Cape Town Stadium, it will hardly feel like a match on the road for the team in blue and yellow.

In head-to-head stats, Ajax and City have met in just two previous league matches. Both of those encounters took place last season, with the Citizens claiming a league ‘double’ over their local rivals: they won 1-0 at home and 2-0 away.

Ajax’s line-up from their 2-2 draw with Baroka on September 23: Petersen, Booysen, Evans, Pietersen (Mdabuka 48′), Nhlapo, Malepe, Lebusa, Kabwe (Margeman 72′), Mosadi, Morris, Makua (Uzoenyi 46′).

City’s line-up from their 1-0 win over Polokwane on September 22: Stephens, Mkhize, Gumede (Fielies 53′), Johannes, Seedat, Nodada, Matsi, Obinna (Akosah-Bempah 79′), Lakay, Patosi (Martin 68′), Majoro.



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Arrows move top following KZN Derby win – ABSA Premiership 2017/18


AmaZulu’s Sadate Ouro Akoriko

by
Phumzile Ngcatshe

Sunday Sep 17, 2017. 17:44


A solitary goal by Sedat Ouro-Akoriko was not enough for AmaZulu as they lost 4-1 to Golden Arrows on Sunday afternoon at Princess Magogo Stadium in the Absa Premiership.

The defeat leaves the Premiership returnees occupying 13th spot on the log table with four points from as many matches.

On the other hand, the hosts found the back of the net through Lerato Lamola, Siphelele Magubane, Kudakwashe Mahachi, and Knox Mutizwa to claim the KwaZulu-Natal bragging rights.

The KZN Derby saw both sides exchanging possession in the opening 10 minutes as they probed for an early goal.

However in the 11th minute, coach Clinton Larsen’s men gained possession and made their way into the box, yet Wayde Jooste’s attempt went over the bar not troubling Usuthu’s Boalefa Pule.

Eight minutes later, the hosts made it 1-0 through Lamola as he capitalised on a defensive error between keeper Pule and his defence.

With coach Cavin Johnson’s men pushing to get an equaliser with a brilliant build-up from the back, Mhlengi Cele’s effort was tipped over the crossbar for a corner by keeper, Nkosingiphile Gumede.

In the 33rd minute,Usuthu were awarded a set piece and Ovidy Karuru delivered to the far post allowing Ouro-Akoriko to find the back of the net to make it it 1-1 with a beautiful header.

With both sides level at half time, their return from the tunnel saw Rhulani Manzini attempting a long range effort from a set-piece, but the forward failed to hit the target in the 51st minute.

The hosts fought back on the left wing as Magubane cut through down to the right – beating two defenders – before unleashing a low shot that beat Pule in the 56th minute, 2-1 to Arrows.

Usuthu introduced Mabhudi Khenyeza heading in the final 15 minutes, as they intensified their attack and pushed Gumede to produce a fine save, and Manzini also hit the woodwork.

But in the end it was Arrows who were sharp upfront as Mahachi made it 3-1 as he picked up the ball on the far side of the pitch before beating Pule.

Right in the dying minutes of the contest, substitute Mutizwa received a ball from Lamola who made a wonderful run down the left flank into the box, allowing the Zimbabwean to easily slot it home to make it 4-1 as they dispatched Usuthu.

Golden Arrows: (1) 4 (Lamola 19′, Magubane 56′, Mahachi 90+2′, Mutizwa 90+5′)

AmaZulu: (1) 1 (Ouro-Akoriko 34′)

Golden Arrows: Gumede, Mngwengwe, Shongwe (Molefe 27′), Jooste, Cele (Sibiya 53′), Nkombela, Mzava, Dube, Lamola, Magubane (Mutizwa 77′), Mahachi

AmaZulu: Pule, Sikhakhane, Mtsweni, Nyongo, Morton, Darpoh (L. Dlamini 46′), Ouro-Akoriko, Karuru(Zungu 78′), Nomvethe (Khenyeza 70′), Cele, Manzini



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Arrows and AmaZulu geared for Durban derby – ABSA Premiership 2017/18


Reeve Fosler of Bidvest Wits challenged by Jabulani Shongwe of Golden Arrows during 2017/18 Absa Premiership game between Bidvest Wits and Golden Arrows at Bidvest Wits Stadium on 13 September [email protected] Kgakatsi/BackpagePix

by
Graeme Jackson

Friday Sep 15, 2017. 09:36


Durban derby teams Golden Arrows and AmaZulu will play out their rivalry in the Absa Premiership when they meet at Princess Magogo Stadium on 17 September 2017, kick-off at 15h00.

Arrows are riding high on confidence after they claimed a first league win of the season on September 13 with a 3-1 beating of champions Bidvest Wits in Johannesburg. The Durban side had too much power and pace for the Clever Boys, with goals from Lerato Lamola, Zolani Nkombelo and Nduduzo Sibiya securing the three points.

Abafana Bes’thende’s only home match in the league this season was a 1-1 draw with Bloemfontein Celtic last month. Coach Clinton Larsen will want another energetic performance from his players, who should be fired up for this cross-town battle.

AmaZulu come into the match having already played one derby this week: they were held 1-1 at home by fellow KwaZulu-Natal side Maritzburg United on September 12. The Durbanites needed a late goal from Mhlengi Cele to secure a share of the spoils.

Usuthu will be hoping for a better away result compared to their only previous match on the road this term, which ended in a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Chippa United prior to the recent international break.

In head-to-head stats, Arrows and AmaZulu have met in 20 league matches since 2001/02. Usuthu have claimed nine wins compared to eight for Abafana Bes’thende, while three matches have been drawn. The Lamontville-based side has recorded five wins and five draws from 10 matches as hosts in this rivalry.

The teams have not met in the top flight league since the 2013/14 season. In that campaign Usuthu claimed a league ‘double’ over their derby rivals with 3-0 and 1-0 triumphs away and home respectively. Abafana Bes’thende have not beaten AmaZulu since a league ‘double’ of their own in 2010/11.

Arrows’ line-up from their 3-1 win over Wits on September 13: Gumede, Mzava, Bilankulu, S. Dube, Mngwengwe, Nkombelo, Shongwe (Sibiya 68’), Magubane, Jooste (N. Cele 67’), Mahachi, Lamola (Mutizwa 81’).

AmaZulu’s line-up from their 1-1 draw with Maritzburg on September 12: Pule, Mtshweni, Sikhakhane, Nyongo, Morton, Darpoh, Mbatha (L.Dlamini 85′), Karuru (Karuru 72′), Nomvethe, Manzini, Khenyeza (Cele 66′).



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AmaZulu and Maritzburg share spoils in KZN Derby


Thembela Sikhakhane of AmaZulu and Mohau Mokate of Maritzburg United go for the ball during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 game between AmaZulu and Maritzburg United at King Zwelithini Stadium, Durban on 12 September 2017 © Steve Haag/BackpagePix

by
Austin Ditlhobolo

Tuesday Sep 12, 2017. 22:00


AmaZulu and Maritzburg United drew 1-1 in an Absa Premiership match at the King Zwelithini Stadium on Tuesday.

Usuthu remain eighth on the league standings, while the Team of Choice also remain at the top of the table following a draw in the KwaZulu-Natal Derby.

AmaZulu shot-stopper Boalefa Pule was the busier of the two goalkeepers in the first-half as Maritzburg pressed the hosts.

The former South Africa youth international produced a brilliant save to deny Pogiso Sanoka, who nearly scored in the 12th minute.

Mohau Mokate, the Maritzburg striker, had a chance to hand his side the lead with the half-hour mark approaching.

However, a last ditch tackle denied him as Usuthu continued to contain the Team of Choice, who were looking for their third successive league win.

The score was 0-0 at the interval after AmaZulu captain Tapelo Nyongo and his troops stood firm at the back in the first-half.

Usuthu played much better in the second-half, but the hosts found it difficult to penetrate the Team of Choice defence.

Cavin Johnson, the Usuthu coach, decided to introduce Mhlengi Cele, who scored 19 goals for Thanda Royal Zulu last season, in the 66th minute.

However, it was the visitors, who took lead through Mohau Mokate, who netted to make it 1-0 to Maritzburg in the 79th minute.

Usuthu never lost hope in the closing stages of the match as they launched late attacks in search of an equalizing goal.

Cele proved to be AmaZulu’s hero as he netted with a good header in the 88th minute and the match ended in a 1-1 draw.

AmaZulu (0) 1 (Cele 88′)

Maritzburg (0) 1 (Mokate 79′)

AmaZulu: Pule, Mtshweni, Sikhakhane, Nyongo, Morton, Darpoh, Mbatha (L.Dlamini 85′), Karuru (Karuru 72′), Nomvethe, Manzini, Khenyeza (Cele 66′).

Marizburg: Ofori, Fransman (Van Wyk 70′), Sanoka, Xulu, Weidlich, Makaringe (Shandu 46′), Rusike, Maboe, Mekoa, Mokate, Ndlovu (Kunene 46′).



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AmaZulu, Maritzburg set for KZN derby – ABSA Premiership 2017/18


Thembela Sikhakhane of AmaZulu FC during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 game between AmaZulu and Free State Stars at King Zwelithini Stadium, Durban on 19 August 2017 © Gerhard Duraan/BackpagePix

by
Graeme Jackson

Monday Sep 11, 2017. 09:00


KwaZulu-Natal rivals AmaZulu and Maritzburg United will meet for an Absa Premiership derby at King Zwelithini Stadium on 12 September 2017, kick-off at 19h30.

AmaZulu come into the game having had a mixed start to their 2017/18 PSL season. While they began the campaign on a high by defeating Free State Stars 1-0 at home, they were soon brought back to earth with a 0-2 loss away to Chippa United just three days later.

The defeat in the Eastern Cape will have been a wake-up call for Usuthu players and coach Cavin Johnson. Nonetheless a return to familiar surroundings after the international break will be a morale-boost as they go in search of a provincial derby win.

As for Maritzburg, they have enjoyed a superb start to the season, claiming back-to-back 2-0 wins over Platinum Stars (away) and Ajax Cape Town (home) to sit proudly atop the log heading into this round of fixtures.

Coach Fadlu Davids knows it is far too early for the Team of Choice to be carried by their fine start to the season and will demand a re-focus for what should be a fearsome encounter against their green-clad provincial rivals.

In head-to-head stats, AmaZulu and United have met in 16 league matches since 2006/07. The Pietermaritzburg side has claimed eight wins compared to two for their Durban counterparts, while six matches have ended in draws. Usuthu have a dire home record against their provincial rivals, with just one win (and five defeats) from eight turns as hosts.

The teams last met in the 2014/15 season, with the Team of Choice taking four points off AmaZulu. The teams drew 1-1 at the Harry Gwala Stadium in the first half of the campaign, while the return game on the final day saw United win 2-1 in Durban – a result which saw Usuthu relegated to the National First Division.

AmaZulu’s line-up from their 2-0 loss to Chippa on 22 August: Pule, Sikhakhane, Mtsweni, Mngqibisa, Nyongo,Morton, Darpoh, Zungu, Ramphele (Nomvethe 65′), Karuru, Khenyeza.

Maritzburg’s line-up from their 2-0 win over Ajax: Mpandle , Sanoka, Fransman, Xulu, Makaringe, Ndlovu, Shandu, Maboe (De Reuck 88′), Saal (Kunene 60′), Mekoa, Rusike (Mokate 87′).



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SuperSport, Sundowns open PSL campaign with Tshwane derby – ABSA Premiership 2017/18


Themba Zwane of Mamelodi Sundowns challenges Onismor Bhasera of Supersport United during the Absa Premiership match beween Supersport United v Mamelodi Sundowns on 19 April 2017 at Lucas Moripe Stadium ©Sydney Mahlangu /BackpagePix

by
Graeme Jackson

Friday Aug 18, 2017. 09:00


SuperSport United and Mamelodi Sundowns will open their 2017/18 Absa Premiership campaign with a derby clash at the Lucas Moripe Stadium on 19 August 2017, kick-off at 15h00.

SuperSport had a mixed campaign in 2016/17: they looked capable of challenging for the league title (even going on a 19-game unbeaten run) but they ended up a disappointing fifth after losing five of their last 10 matches. However, they won the Nedbank Cup and finished as runners-up in the Telkom Knockout.

As for Mamelodi Sundowns, they relinquished their PSL title to Bidvest Wits, losing out in a tough battle to Gavin Hunt’s side. Yet their triumph in the 2016 CAF Champions League underlined their status as one of the continent’s finest teams and they will enter this new campaign determined to reassert domestic dominance.

Both sides have seen some significant changes in the offseason: United have Eric Tinkler as their coach following Stuart Baxter’s move to become Bafana Bafana boss, while ‘Downs have made waves by signing Oupa Manyisa from Soweto giants Orlando Pirates.

In head-to-head terms, United and Sundowns have clashed in 52 league matches since 1990. The Brazilians have dominated the rivalry, claiming 27 wins compared to 14 for Matsatsantsa. The team in blue and white have managed just five wins from 26 home league matches against their rivals, the last of which arrived in the 2012/13 season.

Last term the Brazilians claimed a league ‘double’ over their fellow Tshwane club: ‘Downs claimed an emphatic 5-0 home win in the first half of the campaign, while the return game saw Pitso Mosimane’s side triumph 1-0. It was Sundowns’ seventh successive league win over Matsatsantsa.



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Soweto Derby important as ever for Khune – ABSA Premiership 2016/17 – Kaizer Chiefs


Itumeleng Khune of Kaizer Chiefs celebrates during the Absa Premiership 2014/15 match between Kaizer Chiefs and AmaZulu

by
Bertin Basson

Saturday Jul 29, 2017. 12:00


The Soweto Derby is as important as ever for Kaizer Chiefs stalwart Itumeleng Khune ahead of the 2017 Carling Black Label Cup.

Khune, 30, has started between the sticks on many an occasion against rivals Orlando Pirates – but his desire to beat the Buccaneers has never faded.

The Bafana Bafana shot-stopper is hopeful that the Amakhosi will get one of their rivals at FNB Stadium on Saturday with pride on the line for both teams.

“This game is important for us because every time we play Pirates there is pride at stake,” Khune said.

“Our fans want a win. It is very important for us as a team and players to deliver on the day because that is what our fans expect and that is what we also want as a team.

“We want to see how far we are with preparations ahead of the new season.”

Pre-season game or not, the Soweto Derby is always a highly anticipated showdown and Khune is under no illusion of the match’s importance.

Steve Komphela’s men finished last season without silverware and 10 points behind Absa Premiership champions Bidvest Wits on the final log standings, and will be desperate to change things around in the new season.

“This is a very important match for us in which we have to perform so that we make the starting 11 during the course of the season.

“We have been training on a lot of finishing so it is very important we wrap the game in 90 minutes,” Khune concluded.



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Cairo derby to have foreign referees


Al-Ahly’ Jounir Agay (C) fights for the ball with Zamalek player Mahmoud Hamdy (R) and Mohamed Nasef (L) during the Egyptian Super Cup

by
Graeme Jackson

Tuesday Jul 11, 2017. 14:00


Next week’s Cairo derby will be refereed by foreign officials, as confirmed by the Egyptian FA.

Egyptian Premier League champions Al Ahly will put their unbeaten record on the line when they face Zamalek in the 34th round of the 2016/17 season. The match is set to be held on Monday, July 17.

The appointment of foreign referees is no surprise, with the Cairo derby renowned for being a fiery encounter, and the EFA are eager to ensure their own officials remain above reproach.

The EFA has also confirmed that the 2017/18 season of the Premier League will kick-off on Sunday, September 9 – the weekend after Egypt’s 2018 World Cup qualifier against Uganda.



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Zesco held 1-1 in derby ahead of key CAF clash – 2017 CAF Confederation Cup


Zesco United coach Serbian Krmpotic

by
Graeme Jackson

Thursday Jul 06, 2017. 18:00


Zesco United were held to a draw in a domestic league derby clash against Buildcon in midweek as they prepare for a crucial CAF Confederation Cup match.

Zesco host Al-Hilal Al-Ubayyid in a crucial Group C clash this weekend which will determine whether they join their Sudanese opponents in the quarterfinals.

The Ndola based club were held 1-1 in a domestic league clash by Buildcon on Wednesday. The teams share the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium as their home base.

Jesse Were opened the scoring for Zesco later in the first half, but Buildcon equalised after the break through Chavda Maisha.

Zesco fielded a weakened line-up, with coach Zlatko Krmpotic keeping one eye on their African commitments on the weekend.

“It was a good game for our opponents but not for us. But with all the travelling we have done in the last few days, a point is good enough,” Krmpotic is quoted by SuperSport.

“I noticed in the second half that we were not very aggressive; I don’t know what happened but I think it was all down to fatigue. My players are tired.

“If you noticed, the team we put out today is not our first XI because we wanted some of our players to rest.

“And since we have a crucial game with Al-Hilal Al-Ubayyid on Sunday, it is difficult to motivate players in a league game,” said Krmpotic.



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Al-Merreikh host Omdurman in Sudanese derby


Shaiboub of Hilal (l) and Wawa Baskal of Merreikh (r) during the 2017 CAF Champions League football match between Hilal and Merreikh in Omdurman on 13 May 2017 ©Tayeb Afarah/BackpagePix

by
Phumzile Ngcatshe

Thursday Jun 29, 2017. 16:30


Al-Merreikh will bank on their home ground advantage when they meet neighbours, Al-Hilal Omdurman in the CAF Champions League on Friday.

The fifth Group A match is set to produce fireworks considering the result of the first round as both Sudanese giants settled for a point.

However, the hosts will want continuity as they come from a 2-1 win over Mozambican outfit Ferroviario Da Beira in their last Champions League outing.

On the log table, the Red Devils sit at number three on the table with four points from one win and one draw, separated by goal difference from their visitors.

Coach Diego Garzitto will want a victory to ensure they are the kings in Sudanese football and to also boost their knockout stage aspirations.

Shifting focus to the Blue Wave, Omdurman are also in search of a win to ensure they keep the pressure on log leaders, Etoile du Sahel.

They have four points and trail the leaders by four as they are yet to win in the group after drawing all their matches.

In their previous match, Nabil Kouki’s men drew 1-1 against Tunisian giants Sahel at home, but will hope to stun their neighbours.

Al-Merreikh Stadium in Omdurman is the venue for the fifth round of matches on Friday at 20:00 (CAT).



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Camara finds new club after Derby County deal cancellation – 2019 Africa Cup of Nations Qualifiers


Abdoul Camara of Guinea celebrates a goal ©Pic Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

by
Austin Ditlhobolo

Monday Jun 26, 2017. 11:00


Guinea international Abdoul Camara has made his return to the French Ligue 1 after signing a two-year deal with Guingamp.

This was after 27-year-old winger’s contract with English Championship outfit Derby County was cancelled by mutual consent on Thursday.

Camara, who joined had joined Derby from French Ligue 1 Angers in January 2016, featured in 26 matches for the English side- netting once in the process.

“The En Avant de Guingamp strikes a great blow on the transfer market by attaching the services of Guinean international striker Abdoul Razzagui Camara.

“The 27-year-old winger joins the En Avant for the next 2 seasons. “Razza” will carry number 9 in the Côtes-d’Armor,” a statement read.

Camara, who is a former French youth international, has played 12 times for the Guinea senior national team – netting four times in the process.

The winger has played for French side Rennes and Sochaux, and Spanish club Mallorca. He also had a stint with Greek outfit PAOK.



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Tunisia face Egypt in North African Derby


Ramadan Sobhi of Egypt gets away from Denis Iguma of Uganda during the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations Finals football match between Egypt and Uganda at the Port Gentil Stadium in Gabon on 21 January 2017 ©Chris Ricco/BackpagePix

by
Austin Ditlhobolo

Friday Jun 09, 2017. 18:30


Tunisia will square off with Egypt in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier at the Stade Olympique de Rades in Rades on Sunday.

Kick-off is at 00h00 CAT.

The Eagles of Carthage have clinched the AFCON title once (in 2004). They were knocked out of the 2017 finals in the quarter-finals.

Tunisia took on Morocco in an international friendly last week Wednesday. Morocco emerged 1-0 winners over Tunisia in Marrakech.

Wahbi Khazri is the Eagles of Carthage’s dangerman and he will be eager to inspire Tunisia to victory over Egypt in a Group J encounter.

Meanwhile, Egypt are the most decorated team in the history of AFCON – having won seven titles. They were the runners-up at the 2017 finals.

The Pharaohs locked horns with Libya in an international friendly on Monday. Egypt ran out 1-0 winners over Libya in Cairo.

Mohamed Salah is the player to watch out for in the Egypt team and the winger will be hoping to score and help his nation beat Tunisia in a Group J clash.

Niger and Swaziland are also part of Group J, and the two sides will square off at the Stade General-Seyni-Kountche in Niamey on Saturday.



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Ivory Coast, Guinea set for Elephants derby – 2019 Africa Cup of Nations Qualifiers


Franck Kessie of Ivory Coast challenged by Karim Aroussi El Ahmadi of Morocco during the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations Finals match between Morocco and Ivory Coast at the Oyem Stadium in Gabon on 24 January 2017 ©Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

by
Graeme Jackson

Thursday Jun 08, 2017. 10:30


Ivory Coast and Guinea will get Group H of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers underway when they meet in Bouake on Saturday night. The match at Stade de Bouake is set for 22h00 CAT.

Ivory Coast have appeared at the last seven successive AFCON tournaments, with Tunisia 2004 the last time that they did not participate in the finals of the continental showpiece.

The Elephants, who won the AFCON in 2015 but made a group stage exit in their defence of the title earlier this year, will have their first competitive outing under Belgian coach Marc Wilmots.

His first friendly in charge was a disastrous 0-5 loss at the hands of the Netherlands this past weekend.

“Almost the entire starting line was unavailable. Four players made their debut. In other words, we knew it would be difficult,” Wilomts said in the wake of the heavy loss.

He added, “Our first half was good, but we physically weakened rapidly. We are building a new generation and need time. We now shift the focus to our match against Guinea.”

The Syli Nationale (National Elephants) have only qualified for two of the last five AFCON tournaments and missed the finals in Gabon earlier this year.

Coach Lappe Bangoura will be hoping for a strong start to the group stage and has selected a powerful squad, which includes notable returns for Kevin Constant and Ibrahim Traore.

Ivory Coast and Guinea have met in 18 official internationals according to FIFA’s statistics. The team in orange have claimed 11 wins compared to their counterparts’ three.

The teams’ most recent meeting was an African Nations Championship (CHAN) match in February 2016 which Ivory Coast won 2-1.

The other Group H match between Central African Republic and Rwanda will be played in Bangui on Sunday, 11 June.



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FUS, Club African set for North African derby – 2017 CAF Confederation Cup


FUS Rabat team. Photo: EPA/STR

by
Graeme Jackson

Wednesday May 31, 2017. 11:30


North African rivals FUS Rabat and Club Africain will meet for a regional derby in Group A of the CAF Confederation Cup on Friday night. The match is slated for the Stade de FUS in Rabat.

The Moroccan hosts come into the game on top of the group, but it’s only by the skin of their teeth as all four teams have three points after the first two Matchdays.

While FUS started strongly by beating KCCA 3-0 in Rabat back on May 13, they followed that up with a 1-0 loss away to Nigeria’s Rivers United on May 24.

Club Africain followed the same pattern, defeating Rivers United 3-1 at home in their first match before falling 2-1 at the hands of KCCA in Uganda last time out.

Given that this group has seen nothing but home victories so far, one would have to back FUS to claim all three points and take control of the pool. Yet North African derbies can produce unpredictable results and the Tunisians will fancy their chances of a positive result on the road.

This clash will be the first of a double-header between FUS and Club Africain, with the return game in Rades set for June 20.

Egyptian referee Mahmoud Ahmed Mohamed Bassiouny will take charge of the game in Rabat. The other Group A match will see KCCA host Rivers United in Kampala on Saturday afternoon.



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Celtic, Stars in high-stakes derby – ABSA Premiership 2016/17


Mthokozisi Dube of Bloemfontein Celtic during the Absa Premiership 2016/17 game between Ajax Cape Town and Bloemfontein Celtic at Athlone Stadium in Cape Town on 13 May 2017 © Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

by
Graeme Jackson

Tuesday May 16, 2017. 08:15


Bloemfontein Celtic and Free State Stars will meet for a high-stakes Absa Premiership derby at Dr Molemela Stadium on 17 May 2017, kick-off at 19h30.

Celtic have gone seven league matches without a win after they were beaten 2-0 at Ajax Cape Town on May 13.

The Bloemfontein side has claimed 11 points from 14 home matches this season.

Phunya Sele Sele are placed 12th on the Absa Premiership log with 27 points from 28 matches.

Stars claimed their first win in six league matches when they defeated Bidvest Wits 3-1 at home on May 10.

The Free State side has claimed seven points from 14 away matches this season.

Ea Lla Koto are placed 13th on the Absa Premiership log with 26 points from 28 matches.

In head-to-head stats, Stars and Celtic have met in 51 league matches since 1986.

Ea Lla Koto have 18 wins compared to 13 for Phunya Sele Sele, while 20 matches have been drawn.

Celtic have won eight of their 25 home league matches against Stars, suffering six defeats in the process.

When the teams met earlier this season, they played to a goalless draw in a home match for Ea Lla Koto.

Stars are unbeaten in their last five league matches against Celtic.

Celtic’s line-up from their 2-0 loss to Ajax: Tignyemb, Letlabika, Nyatama, Lakay, Hotto, Ndengane, Maruping (Mahlasela 36’), Phalane, Dube, Lebri (Mabaso 73’), Abdul-Razak (Dlamini 59’).

Stars’ line-up from their 3-1 win over Wits: Ngobeni, Mbhele, Teyise, Sekotlong (Kerspuy 71′), Mahamutsa, Jantjie, Masehe, Dlamini (Venter 90′) Mashego, Anas, Makhaula.



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