24 July 2014 16:14
Siaka Traore is confident ASEC Mimosas can still reach the semi-finals of the CAF Confederation Cup as they prepare to face Cotonsport.
ASEC currently sit third in Group A, five points behind Saturday’s opponents, having claimed just two points from three matches.
Daouda Kamilou scored a stoppage-time winner to secure a 3-2 victory for Cotonsport in the reverse fixture with ASEC last month.
However, Traore’s team can take confidence from qualifying for the Coupe de Cote d’Ivoire final on Saturday, courtesy of a 1-0 victory over Sporting Gagnoa.
In a recent interview with AfricanFootball.com, coach Traore said: “If Cotonsport managed to defeat us in Abidjan we should also be able to get a result in Cameroon.
“We have proved in the past that we can perform on the road.
“I think that it is not over yet. There are three matches left and we will do our best to qualify.”
In the weekend’s other Group A clash, which takes place on Sunday, Real Bamako of Mali travel to Congolese side Leopards knowing that anything but a win will put an end to their hopes of reaching the last four.
Zambian side Nkana face Tunisia’s Etoile du Sahel in Group B on Saturday with a new coach at the helm.
The FAZ Super Division champions appointed Beston Chambeshi on a three-year contract this week after the tragic death of Masautso Mwale, who was killed in a traffic accident in May.
For the Tunisian club, newly-signed Nigerian midfielder Moses Orkuma has been ruled out of participation in this season’s Confederation Cup after it emerged he had featured in the CAF Champions League with Al Ahli Benghazi of Libya earlier this year.
The other Group B fixture sees Al Ahly welcome Sewe Sport of Ivory Coast to the Cairo International Stadium, with the recently crowned Egyptian Premier League champions knowing a victory will guarantee them a semi-final spot.
CAF Champions League holders Al Ahly were in the news this week after releasing five players from their first-team squad, including Ahmed Raouf, who only joined in January from ENPPI.
Al Ahly’s new Spanish coach Juan Carlos Garrido was brought in to overhaul the squad with an emphasis on young and talented players.
He will, however, be able to call on the services of full-back Ahmed Fathi, who has returned from an unsuccessful trial with Premier League giants Arsenal.