9 Arab teams await the draw for the group stage of the African Champions League

Cairo: supporters of the African football team in general, and the Arab ones in in particular, they await the draw for the group stage of the African Champions League. The group stage of the current Champions League edition is expected to witness a lot of excitement and rivalry in order to grasp the nominations for the playoffs. Eight teams that have won 29 titles in the tournament, the first edition of which was launched in 1964, participate in the group stage, which portends more fun in this role. Al-Ahly of Egypt, holder of the record by number of championship wins with 10 titles, it is in head to this season’s group stage entrants, as does his traditional rival, Zamalek, who has won the championship five times. Among the teams that reached the podium in the competition there are also the Tunisian Esperance (4 titles), Wydad Casablanca and the Moroccan Raja Casablanca (3 titles each), the Algerian JS Kabylie (2 titles), the South African Mamelodi Sundowns and the Congolese Democratic Vita Club (single title). ). The Sudanese Al Hilal and Al Merreikh, and the Algerian youth teams of Belouizdad also participate in the group stage, bringing the number of Arab football representatives in the tournament to 9, the same number in which you participated in the group stage during the last edition. of the competition. The group stage also includes some teams still looking for their first title in the tournament, namely Petro de Luanda from Angola, Houria Conakry from Guinea, Simba from Tanzania, Cotton from Cameroon, as well as Ugandan Vipers, who have climbed for the first time. in this role after having exploded a sensational surprise by eliminating Mazembe, the Congolese Democratic Republic, champion of the competition 5 times, from the round of 32. I 16 club emerging will be divided in 4 groups, with 4 teams in each group, with only the leaders and the runners-up in the playoffs, starting from the quarter-finals. And it was decided to classify the teams qualified for the group stage in 4 levels, in based on the results obtained in the last five years in various African competitions, provided that each group includes only one team per level during the draw. Consequently, the four levels will be as follows: The first level: Al-Ahly, Esperance, Wydad (titular), Raja. Level Two: Sun Downs, Zamalek, Petro de Luanda, Houria Conakry. Third level: Al Hilal, JS Kabylie, Shabab Belouizdad, Simba Tanzania. Fourth level: Vipers, Cotton, Mars, Vita Club. There are no specific conditions for the draw. It is possible that two teams from the same nation are present in a group, provided they are different in the standings, which means that Al-Ahly and Zamalek can be present in a round, after they had been in previously in the same group in 2008, 2012 and 2013, which also applies to Al Hilal and Al Marreikh, who played in the same group in the latest version. It should be noted that the Champions League group stage will take place from 10 February until next April 1, with the final phase returning in home and away from home, in June. (Dpa)