Nigeria’s representatives at the 2017 CAF Champions League, Rangers International and Rivers United, both crashed out of the competition this weekend after suffering defeats that halted their advancement to the group stage.
While Rivers United lost 4-0 against Sudan’s Al-Merreikh in their second leg, first round clash on Saturday to lose out 4-3 on aggregate, Enugu Rangers couldn’t overturn their 4-1 deficit from the first leg against Egypt’s Zamalek in the return leg at the Nnamdi Azikwe Stadium on Sunday.
Rivers blew their big first leg lead against the Sudanese side. They looked to have wrapped up the tie following their 3-0 first leg win in Port Harcourt last week but could neither hold their own nor match the pace and technical depth of their hosts in the return leg as they went down 3-0 before half time.
It was on resumption that the Sudanese increased the tally to 4 goals that ensured the Port Harcourt side were eliminated before the group stage
On Sunday, the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) champions Rangers had hoped to score three unreplied goals against the Egyptian side Zamalek, but only won the game 2-1 to crash out 3-5 on aggregate.
The Enugu side could not score more goals after Tope Olusesi and Godwin Aguda scored in the first and second half respectively, as they also conceded a 71st minute strike from Zamalek’s Basan Morsi.
The Nigerian teams, Rivers United and Rangers, will now drop to the CAF Confederation Cup play-off round, while Al-Merrikh and Zamalek advance into the Champions League group stage.
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