Sfaxien are ready to repel Etoile

TUNIS - Taieb Mhiri Stadium in the eastern Tunisian merchant city of Sfax is never going to feature among the great African football venues.

TUNIS - Taieb Mhiri Stadium in the eastern Tunisian merchant city of Sfax is never going to feature among the great African football venues.

It has an official capacity of just 18000 and modern is not a word that would feature in a description of the home of CS Sfaxien, a member of the "big four" who have dominated the national club scene for decades.

But even the most successful and popular football club on the continent, El-Ahly from Egypt, cannot boast a home record to match that of African Confederation Cup title holders Sfaxien.

They have staged 13 matches at Taieb Mhiri over two campaigns in the African equivalent of the European Uefa Cup and won every one, sometimes by handsome margins against high-profile opposition.

And it is there tomorrow that Sfaxien will host fellow Tunisians Etoile Sahel in the first leg of a final that is certain to create history as the winners will become the first club to lift the trophy twice.

Sfaxien exceeded expectations in last year's final by winning home and away against Al-Merreikh of Sudan to succeed Etoile. - Sapa-AFP

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