JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, Oct 16 – Egypt will host the 2020 CAF Champions League final if one of their clubs qualifies to play a Moroccan team, the Confederation of African Football announced Friday.
Al Ahly and Zamalek from Cairo and Raja and Wydad from Casablanca have reached the semi-finals and Egypt or Morocco would host the final if the two clubs come from the same country.
But the possibility of a final between Egyptian and Moroccan clubs necessitated a draw being conducted and CAF competitions director Samson Adamu pulled Egypt from the bowl first.
Awarding the final to Egypt if it involves clubs from that country and Morocco draws the curtains on months of speculation as to where the African club showcase might be staged.
Douala was the choice for single-match semi-finals and the final, but the Cameroonian port city withdrew due to the coronavirus and the penultimate stage reverted to two legs.
CAF then decided that Egypt hosts an Ahly-Zamalek final, Morocco stages a Raja-Wydad final and a ‘mixed’ title decider will be in Egypt, with Cairo and Alexandria the contenders.
German Ernst Middendorp has been named coach of Ethiopian giants Saint George a month after being sacked by 2020 South African Premiership runners-up Kaizer Chiefs.
Chiefs last month completed five seasons without a trophy when they surrendered first place to Mamelodi Sundowns on the final day of the season.
Addis Ababa-based Saint George have been Ethiopian champions a record 29 times and Middendorp succeeds Serb Srđan Zivojhov.
Former South African Premiership coach Joel Masutha has been put in charge of top-flight newcomers Tshakhuma Tsha Manzivhandila (TTM) just two days before they debut.
Predecessor Norman Mapeza lasted only three weeks before quitting with the former Zimbabwe international citing “unworkable conditions”.
TTM, a second division club who bought the status of disbanded Premiership side Bidvest Wits, host title-holders SuperSport United Saturday in a knockout competition quarter-final.
National coach Djamel Belmadi has praised the Africa Cup of Nations title-holders after a midweek draw with Mexico stretched their unbeaten streak to 20 matches.
“We are going to improve even more,” promised the former Manchester City midfielder as he began preparing for back-to-back 2021 Cup of Nations qualifiers against Zimbabwe next month.
“I have a tactically adaptable squad that quickly corrects mistakes and we could have beaten higher-ranked Mexico had one of our players not been sent off soon after half-time.”
Plateau United coach Abdu Maikaba has set his squad a minimum target in the 2021 CAF Champions League of reaching the semi-finals.
“The target is to at least reach the semi-finals after which anything could happen,” he told AFP ahead of the November kick-off.
Plateau defeated Eding Sport of Cameroon two seasons ago before losing to Etoile Sahel of Tunisia in their only previous Champions League appearance.
A ban on using the National Stadium in Harare for international fixtures has been lifted by CAF.
It means the eagerly anticipated 2021 Cup of Nations qualifier against title-holders Algeria on November 11 can go ahead in the Zimbabwean capital.
Sub-standard changing rooms and spectator seating were among the reasons why the 60,000-capacity venue was blacklisted.
Ghana goalkeeper Richard Ofori is on the verge of move from Maritzburg United to fellow South African Premiership club Orlando Pirates.
Should the deal be finalised, Ofori will compete with 37-year-old former South Africa shot-stopper Wayne Sandilands to be first choice under German coach Josef Zinnbauer.
Maritzburg are eyeing Mamelodi Sundowns third-choice goalkeeper Reyaad Pieterse as a replacement for the Ghanaian.