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Sunday, 12 March 2017

Imperial Ohawuchi leads Zamalek’s 4-1 rout of Enugu Rangers…See full details

Stanley Ohawuchi

• Rivers United beat Al Merreikh 3-0

Nigeria’s Stanley Ohawuchi was in his imperial best as he ran Enugu Rangers ragged yesterday, leading his Egyptian club, Zamalek to a 4-1 rout of Enugu Rangers at the El-Salam Stadium, Cairo. It was the first leg of their last qualifying round for the CAF Champions League and the Nigerian champions, who narrowly qualified for this round, had no answer to the devastating runs by Ohawuchi, Hossam Salama, Ayman Hefni and Mostafa Fathi in Zamalek’s attack.

The Nigerians came into the match with the intent of getting a result that would make the return leg in Enugu a bit easy, but they were served a cold dish by the home side.

The game was barely eight minutes old when Ohawuchi opened the floodgate of goals for the Egyptians. Hossam Salama made it two in the 29th minute, while Ayman Hefni increased the tally to 3-0 in the 34th minute. The first half ended 3-0 in Zamalek’s favour.

Rangers came into the second half determined to reduce the tally, but the Flying Antelopes, who missed some of the stars that helped them to their first domestic title in 32 years last year, including Chisom Egbuchulam, Obinna Nwobodo and Godwin Aguda, could not penetrate the Zamalek defence marshalled by Ali Gabr.

Rather than relaxing their foot on the pedal, the home team increased the tally to 4-0 in the 54th minute through Egyptian international, Mostafa Fathi. Rangers, however, got their consolatory goal in the 84th minute through Charles Negedu.

With this result, Rangers must beat Zamalek 3-0 without conceding any next week to qualify for the group stage of the competition.

While Rangers were going through a torrid time in Cairo, Nigeria’s second entrant in the competition, Rivers United had a fairly easy ride in Port Harcourt, where they hammered Sudanese side, Al Merreikh 3-0.

Rivers United went into the break with a 2-0 lead off the boots of Guy Kuemian (15th and 18th minutes), while Esosa Igbinosa made the scores more comfortable in the 85th minute.

The second leg will be played at the Al-Merreikh Stadium, Omdurman next week. The winner of the tie will qualify for the group stage of the competition.

Vía Uzomedia

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