Historic win for St George opens up Champions League pool
St George became the first club from Ethiopia to win a match in the group phase of the CAF Champions League when they beat AS Vita Club 1-0 on Sunday, while record winners Al Ahly continued their march towards the last eight with victory over Wydad Casablanca.
Sunday's two matches completed the weekend's programme as the group competition reached the halfway stage with all 16 teams still in contention for a top two finish and a place in the quarter-finals.
St George are the first Ethiopian side to get to the group stage in the 20 years since the Champions League was launched, and they maintained their unbeaten start with their first goal of the mini tournament from top scorer Salehedin Said.
The 60th-minute effort in Addis Ababa was enough to condemn AS Vita to a third successive defeat and leave the 2014 runners-up floundering at the bottom of the Group C standings, although they can still bounce back if they win their remaining trio of matches.
Said has now scored six goals in all rounds of this year's Champions League and is the top scorer, even if this was the club's first goal in three matches after goalless draws in their opening two Group C outings.
St George now have five points in second place, behind Esperance on seven, but ahead of defending champions Mamelodi Sundowns on four.
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Al Ahly share top place in Group D with Zanaco of Zambia on seven points after their 2-0 victory over Wydad. Goals on either side of the interval from Moemen Zakareya and Junior Ajayi saw Ahly home in comfortable fashion at Alexandria's Borg El-Arab Stadium.
Ajayi set up the opener in the 24th minute for winger Zakareya. Hossam Ashour intercepted a pass, fed the ball to playmaker Abdallah El-Said, whose through-ball was latched onto by the Nigerian. Ajayi made a superb turn before striking towards goal, with Zakareya snatching up the rebound after the initial parry by Wydad goalkeeper Zouhair Laaroubi.
An error from Wydad midfielder Brahim Nakach set up Ajayi, on the edge of the six-yard box, for an easy finish 10 minutes from the end of time for the second goal of the night.