Horsemen, Woliata to play in CAF tournaments
The 2018 Confederation Cup and Champions League preliminary round draws have been announced by the Confederation African football (CAF). The Horsemen host South Sudanese club Wau Salaam on Sunday in the CAF Champions League while Woliata Dicha face Zanzibar side Zimamoto, in the Confederation Cup.
The Horsemen have an unrivaled record in the Ethiopian Premier League, winning 14 titles, of which four came in consecutive years. However, their domestic success could not has not been complimented on a continental level.
The Horsemen will face a relatively easy opposition in the first preliminary match on home soil. Wau Salaam FC will be their debut appearance in CAF Champions League competition since they were champions of South Sudan Premier League.
St. George, advanced to the group stages in the last season’s CAF champions league competition and were drawn in group C with Esperance de Tunis, Mamelodi Sundowns and AS Vita Club. However, the Horsemen were out in the group stage having earned just five points from six matches.
On the domestic front, St. George have been struggling with inconsistency in the last 13 Ethiopian Premier League matches and the team is plagued by injuries.
“We are suffering with injuries and form might not look good, but this will be solved soon and now we are looking forward to Sunday’s match,” St. George assistant coach Zerihun Shengeta told The Reporter.
According to Zerihun, Aschalew Temene (defender), Salahdin Seid (striker), Alula Girma (full back) and a newly signed Tadele Mangesh (midfielder) will be in the squad, though not sure if all or some of them will be fit after returning from injury.
Elsewhere, a new face for CAF competitions, Woliata Dicha is taking on Zimamoto FC, on February 11, 2018 in an away match. Zimamoto competes in the Zanzibar Premier League and is placed 4th with 22 points amassed from the last 13 matches. They competed in the CAF Champions League in 2017. It will be a debut match for Woliata Dicha and play the return match on February 20-21, 2018 in the newly built Hawassa stadium. After the two matches, winner will play against Zamlek to advance to the next round.
The 2018 CAF Confederation Cup will be the 15th edition of the CAF Confederation Cup. It is the second African clubs’ competition which is organized by CAF. The winners of CAF Confederation team will have a right to play in African Champions League tournaments in the 2019 CAF Super Cup. TP Mazempe are the two-time defending champions and having qualified for CAF 2018 champions league, they will be able to, again, defend their title unless they lose in the CAF champions league first round.
Elsewhere, the 2018 CAF Champions league will be the 54th edition of African premier club football tournament and the final winner will qualify as the CAF representative at the 2018 FIFA Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates and earn the right to play against the winners of the 2018 CAF Confederation Cup, in the 2019 CAF Super Cup. Wydad Casablanca is the defending champions.