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Football

Record holders Al Ahly win battle for supremacy

CAIRO

With the two quarterfinalists of Group D already determined heading into the final weekend of the group stage of the 2023-24 CAF Champions League, the only thing to determine was the winner of the group on Friday and it was defending champions Al Ahly who earned top spot. The Egyptian giants confirmed themselves as the winners of the group in Cairo with a 1-0 victory over Tanzania’s Young Africans. Despite the result, Young Africans finished in second place ahead of Algeria’s CR Belouizdad by virtue of a superior head-to-head record after CRB defeated Medeama SC of Ghana in the other Group D match on Friday.

Young Africans did well to keep the match tight against Al Ahly in Cairo but an impressive team movement gave the hosts the advantage just after halftime. An effective passing combination opened up space for Ahly left back Ali Maâloul on the wing in the 46th minute. Yanga goalkeeper Djigui Diarra came out to challenge the Tunisia national team player who passed to Hussein El Shahat for a low finish past a group of defenders guarding the goal.

In the other Group D match on Friday featuring clubs already eliminated from contention to reach the quarterfinals, hosts CR Belouizdad concluded their campaign with a 3-0 victory over Medeama in Algiers. Abdelraouf Benguit and striker Leonel Wamba each scored for CRB in the first half, after which the hosts found a late third goal through substitute Lamin Jallow. CRB moved level on points with second placed Young Africans but their decisive 4-0 defeat in Dar es Salaam last week allowed Yanga to finish as runners-up.

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