CAF Champions League: Express Fall Short at Al-Merrikh

Sunday, September 19
*Al-Merrikh 1-0 Express

Express FC have bundled out of the CAF Champions League on the first hurdle after a 1-0 away loss to Al-Merrikh on Sunday.

The result, coupled with a 2-1 win at Kitende in the first leg, ends 2-2 on aggregate but the Red Eagles lose the tie on away goals rule.

Ahmed Hamid Al-Tash scored the important goal in the 73rd minute when he was put through by Bakri Al-Madina.

The forward neatly slotted under a helpless Joel Mutakubwa to garner wild celebrations at the Obeid stadium.

It is the end of the road for Express FC who returned to the continent after winning the Uganda Premier League last season for the first time since 2012.

KCCA FC remains Uganda’s only club to reach the CAF Champions League group stages in its current format.

Express FC Bow Out

The Red Eagles were at the back foot right from start but had showed a high level of discipline throughout before a lapse in concentration that handed the hosts a reprieve.

Despite playing with the support of a raucous crowd, the hosts enjoyed more possession but had failed to create a real breakthrough.

Mutakubwa denied Ahmed Adam and Isaac Abdelrahman fired over the bar later on as the hosts tried to find the needed goal.

After a goalless draw in the first half, Express came out of their shells and almost found the back of the net but substitute George Ssenkaaba shot an inch wide.

Express attacking trio was starved of possession – Godfrey Lwesibawa was taken off injured in the first half, Martin Kizza had a chance midway through the second half but shot far wide while Eric Kambale was pocketed throughout.

Express will rue their inability to kill off the game in the first leg at Kitende but will feel that the events leading to their return leg in Sudan had a lot to do with their bowing out.

The game was initially scheduled to be played on Friday in Khartoum but it was later pushed to Sunday at Obeid, much to Express FC’s disappointment.

Al-Merrikh will face Zanaco of Zambia in the next round while Express will return at home for Uganda Cup semifinal tie against BUL FC.

Players Used:

Al-Merrikh – Munjid Al-Neal, Ahmed Adam, Saleh Nimir, Amir Kamal, Abdelrahman Isaac, Mohammed Al Rashid, Mohammed Hashim, El Sammani El Sawey, Ahmed Hamid Al-Tash, Bakri Al Madina

Express FC – Joel Mutakubwa, Enock Walusimbi, Arthur Kiggundu, Isa Lumu, Murushid Juuko, John Byamukama, Mahad Yaya, Muzamir Mutyaba, Eric Kambale, Godfrey Lwesibawa, Martin Kizza



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *