The CAF Confederation Cup has over the years been one of the most sought out tournaments in the world as teams fall out of order in the Champions League to compete in the second-tier competition of African Club Football.
This year’s competition is the 28th edition of Africa’s secondary club football tournament organized by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) and the 16th edition under the current CAF Confederation Cup title.
The 2018/2019 edition has reached it group stage with clubs from the likes of Morocco, Tunisia and Zambia heavily represented with high hopes capitalizing on past experiences.
Here are some five key players that we must look out for during this group stage.
Ahmed Gasmi is an Algerian footballer who plays For NA Hussein Dey in the Algerian professional league. The twenty-two-year-old striker, who signed his first professional contract with MC EI EULMA in the Ligue Professionnelle 2 in 2008 has been a clinical finisher since he joined NA Hussein Dey in the Algerian top-flight league in 2015. He currently has 26 goals after 55 games. He is credited with five goals in the CAF Confederation Cup in the qualification stage.
Aguda is a 21 year-old Nigerian footballer who plies his trade for seven-time Nigerian Premier League title holders Enugu Rangers Football Club. He is a midfielder with five goals in the CAF Confederation Cup. Aguda scored his side’s winning goal against Bantu FC from Lesotho last Sunday at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Sports Stadium. He had led his side to an enviable unbeaten run of six matches.
Maxwell Baako officially joined Kumasi Asante Kotoko on November 1, 2018 as the team were preparing to start their African campaign in the annual CAF Confederation Cup competition. Before joining Kotoko, Baako was named among the six players behind the impressive form of his former club Karela United in the 2017/2018 season. He also played an outstanding role in Wa All Stars’ league triumph in 2016 as the nimble-footed winger was one of standout players in the campaign that season. His transfer to Asante Kotoko caused a stir in the media circles but since he joined the club, he has proved critics wrong with his performance. He has two goals for the Kumasi based club in the CAF Confederation Cup.
Azulao is a Brazilian prolific striker who currently plays for Petro de Luanda in the Angolan top-flight league. He is the top scorer of the two last seasons of the top division football championship (Girabola 2018/19) with 16 and 20 goals respectively in Angola. Azulao has made 62 appearances for Petro Luanda and scored 44 goals since he joined the club and already has three goals in the CAF Confederations Cup to his credit.
Raja Casablanca’s Benhalib has been phenomenal since he joined the club in 2015. He is very swift with the ball and can shoot from any angle. He has played about 60 games with the Moroccan side with 28 goals to his credit. He scored 12 goals in the 2017/2018 CAF Confederation Cup; making him the most fearsome striker and the top goal scorer of the competition.
Credit: James Eshun/universnewsroom.com