Al-Ahly in late Champions League surge

Sello Rabothata

The men have now been separated from the boys as the last four standing in the CAF African Champions League were decided last weekend.

Mighty Al-Ahly of Egypt overcame a recent slump to beat Asec Abidjan of Ivory Coast 2-0 on Sunday.

Sapa-AFP reports that the deadlock in a tense winner-takes-all tussle at Cairo Stadium was broken after 76 minutes when Angola World Cup striker Flavio Amado pushed the ball over the line after a defensive blunder. And the darling of Egypt, injury-plagued midfielder Mohamed Aboutraika, came on late in the match and sealed victory with a soft goal one minute into stoppage time.

Ahly and Hilal will be joined in the penultimate phase of the $3,5 million competition by Group A winners Etoile Sahel of Tunisia and surprise runners-up Al-Ittihad of Libya.

Highlights of these games will be screened on the African Soccer Television show on SABC1 Sport's Laduma programme on Sunday at 5pm

For the record, eight goals were scored in the four games played with Royal Armed Forces and JS Kabylie bowing out with a 1-all draw from Group A, while Al Ittihad blasted group leaders Etoile Sahel 2-0 in a surprise result that saw both teams through to the next stage.

In Group B Al-Ahly made sure of home-ground advantage and crowd support to edge Asec Abidjan 2-0, which saw them squeeze past the Ivorians into second place behind Al Hilal, who could only draw 1-1 with Tunisia's Esperance who had nothing to lose in that game as they were already through.

Also in the highlights is the Fifa U-17 World Cup 2007 games in which Ghana spanked Brazil 1-0, and then lost 2-1 to Spain in the quarterfinal.