CAF Champions League: Al Ahly edges Simba, Sundowns loses unbeaten record

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TOPSHOT - This picture shows the trophy prior to the draw of the Confederation of African Football's (CAF) Champions league at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Cairo on December 28, 2018. (Photo by MOHAMED EL-SHAHED / AFP) (Photo credit should read MOHAMED EL-SHAHED/AFP/Getty Images)

Defending champions Al Ahly defeated Tanzanian giants Simba S.C. on Friday to finish the group stage of this season’s CAF Champions League with a victory.

The Egyptians won 1-0 in Cairo, thanks to a goal from Mohamed Sherif just after the half hour mark, exacting revenge for a similar defeat away in Tanzania earlier in the group stage.

FILE PHOTO: A picture of the Confederation of African Football’s (CAF) Champions League trophy. (Photo credit MOHAMED EL-SHAHED/AFP/Getty Images)

Both teams had already qualified for the quarterfinals but the Tanzanians retained top spot in the group with 13 points followed by the record nine-time champions who had 11 points.

The other group game saw AS Vita Club of Democratic Republic of Congo also end their campaign on a high with a 3-1 home win to Al-Merreikh of Sudan.

AS Vita finished in third on seven points while Al-Merreikh finished fourth with two points.

Meanwhile 2016 champions Mamelodi Sundowns lost their unbeaten record of this campaign after suffering a 2-0 home loss in Pretoria to Algeria’s CR Belouizdad.

Sundowns, who finished with 13 points, had already been confirmed as winners of Group B while CR Belouizdad, who had also already booked their place in the knockout phase, ended with nine points.

Five-time winners TP Mazembe avoided the embarrassment of finishing bottom of the group after beating Al-Hilal Omdurman 2-0.

The win lifted the Congolese side up to third on five points while the Sudanese side dropped to fourth, a further point behind.

Two more places in the quarterfinals will be decided later on Saturday as four sides battle to progress from their respective groups.

Horoya AC of Guinea will play Kaizer Chiefs of South Africa in a winner-takes-all match in Group C. In Group D, one of the contenders, MC Alger will take on already-qualified Esperance while the other hopefuls, last season’s runners-up Zamalek will face Teungueth.

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