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Sundowns To Meet Esperance In The Champions League Semis

  • April 7, 2024
  • 2 min read
Sundowns To Meet Esperance In The Champions League Semis

Mamelodi Sundowns will face ES Tunis in the CAF Champions League semifinal later this month.  

This after Esperance, as they are known, beat Ivorian side ASEC Mimosas 4-2 on penalty shootouts in the second leg of the competition in Abidjan on Sunday morning.  

The game went straight to penalties after it was finished to a goalless draw in both legs before the Tunisian side edged the tie.  

Had Esperance lost to the 1995 losing finalists to Orlando Pirates, Sundowns would have qualified for the FIFA Club World Cup that will take place next year in the US.  

Rulani Mokwena’s side, for them the equation is simple to qualify outright– it is to win the competition for the first time since 2016 to join holders Al Ahly and losing finalists Wydad Athletic Club in Club World Cup as those two have taken two slots in Africa. 

The other route will be to defeat Esperance in the semis and reach the final because their CAF rankings place them third.   

Sundowns progressed to the semi-final of the Champions League in controversial circumstances, beating Tanzanian side Young Africans on penalty shootouts at Loftus Stadium on Friday night. 

The last time Sundowns met Esperance was in the 2017 Champions League group stages, losing in Pretoria before getting a draw away. In the end, Esperance finished top and Sundowns finished second in Group C.  

However, they both lost in the quarter-finals, with Sundowns losing to Wydad while ES Tunis went down to Al Ahly.  

The two North African sides went on to square off in the final, with Wydad succeeding Sundowns as they won the Champions League.    

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Robin-Duke Madlala

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