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Football African rookies Kampala desperate to topple giants Ahly

Rookies Kampala Capital City Authority of Uganda and record eight-time winners Al Ahly of Egypt will be equally desperate for CAF Champions League matchday 2 points when they clash Tuesday.

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Fans of Tunisian football club Esperance Sportive de Tunis cheer as their side holds Egypt's Al-Ahly FC to a 0-0 draw in their CAF Champions League group A match play

Fans of Tunisian football club Esperance Sportive de Tunis cheer as their side holds Egypt's Al-Ahly FC to a 0-0 draw in their CAF Champions League group A match

(AFP/File)

Rookies Kampala Capital City Authority of Uganda and record eight-time winners Al Ahly of Egypt will be equally desperate for CAF Champions League matchday 2 points when they clash Tuesday.

Both clubs began their Group A campaigns disappointingly with Ahly held 0-0 at home by Esperance of Tunisia and Kampala losing 1-0 away to Township Rollers of Botswana.

"This is a very important match for us and it will not be easy, but we hope to win," Ahly coach Hossam el Badry told reporters when the African giants arrived in the Ugandan capital.

There are six fixtures this Tuesday, one on Wednesday and one next Tuesday and AFP Sport takes a group-by-group look at what is at stake.

Group A

The Kampala-Ahly clash in Namboole is a potential cracker as the Egyptians dare not lose while the Ugandans must win to be realistic contenders for a top-two finish and a quarter-finals spot.

El Badry has kept faith in young South African Phakamani Mahlambi, including him in the squad after he squandered several good chances to break the deadlock against Esperance.

The Tunisians will lack injured striker Taha Yassine Khenissi at home to Rollers in Rades, but it would be a shock if the two-time champions failed to secure full points.

Group B

TP Mazembe of the Democratic Republic of Congo made a fantastic start to what is widely regarded as the toughest group by hammering Entente Setif of Algeria 4-1 in Lubumbashi.

Rapidly improving Congolese Ben Malango bagged a brace and will need close policing in Morocco from Difaa el Jadida, who exceeded expectations by holding Mouloudia Alger 1-1 in Algeria.

Setif host Mouloudia in an Algerian derby and another loss for the two-time champions would all but end their challenge just a third of the way through the mini-league phase.

Group C

While it is dangerous to assume any fixture is a foregone conclusion, it would be a sensation if defending champions Wydad Casablanca of Morocco fail to defeat visiting Port of Togo.

Wydad drew 1-1 at 2016 champions Mamelodi Sundowns of South Africa through an Ismail el Haddad header while Port were the only matchday 1 losers at home, falling 2-1 to Horoya of Guinea.

Horoya host Sundowns in Conakry on May 22 as the Pretoria club play Lionel Messi-inspired Spanish league and cup winners Barcelona in a friendly in Johannesburg this Wednesday.

Group D

Etoile Sahel of Tunisia and Mbabane Swallows of Swaziland can move three points clear of Zesco United of Zambia and Primeiro Agosto of Angola if they use home advantage to maximum effect.

Swallows created a stir last year by making the last 16 of the second-tier CAF Confederation Cup and host Primeiro in Manzini having come from behind to hold Zesco 1-1 in Ndola.

There was a similar scoreline in Luanda between Primeiro and Sahel, whose 4-1 thrashing by Club Africain in the Tunisian FA Cup final at the weekend was a bitter blow before hosting Zesco.

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