Egypt/Angola: Jol Grabs First Win As Ahly Progress

Dutch tactician Martin Jol grabbed his first continental win as coach of Egyptian giants Al Ahly, which also came with a place at the 1/8th round.

The Red Devils managed a 2-0 win over visiting Angolan side Recreativo do Libolo to qualify via the same result on aggregate, after a barren draw in the first leg in Libolo, Angola last week.

Talented youngster Ramadan Sobhy gave Ahly the lead after just 10 minutes, before Ghana-import John Antwi doubled the lead eight minutes from time.

Jol, who previously coached Premier League sides Tottenham Hotspurs and Fulham guided his side to their debut victory in the continental club championship since taking over few weeks ago. The 60-year old has previously expressed his desire to annex the ultimate with Ahly – winning the most prestigious title in African club football.

Ahly started the game on a positive note, and needed just 10 minutes to break the deadlock. Talented teenager Sobhy rounded his marker before drilling the ball past Recreativo do Libolo’s goalkeeper Ricardo Batista.

Gabonese striker Malick Evouna came close to doubling the lead after 20 minutes but his header went just wide. Evouna who was a continuous threat to the visitors’ backline tried his luck again but was met with a similar fate at the half hour mark.

Libolo’s best chance of the half came on the stroke of halftime when Senegalese striker Mamadou Diarra fired a feee-kick that was on way to the back of the net, but for Ahly shot stopper Ahmed Adel, who fully stretched to save his side.

After the break, Ahly continued to press searching for the second goal and solidify their lead. Substitute Walid Soliman found Evouna for a one-on-one with Ricardo, but the Angolan goalkeeper made no mistake with a good save.

Substitute Antwi needed just a couple of minutes after his introduction to double Ahly’s lead. He tapped the ball easily from Soliman’s cross to seal victory.

Ahly will face Tanzania’s Young Africans at the next round with a place at the group stage as the winner’s prize.

Reactions

Martin Jol (Head Coach, Al Ahly)

I’m satisfied with my team’s performance and the result. We missed a number of chances and definitely deserved to win today. The first leg result was tricky and we had to keep a clean sheet which we managed to do. I have to praise our opponent’s (Recreativo do Libolo) performance. They are a very well organized and talented team. I also applaud our goalkeeper Ahmed Adel who saved a couple of dangerous chances that would have complicated our mission. We have to work on solving the problem of missing chances, but I’m happy with my players.

Joao Costa (Head Coach, Recreativo do Libolo)

Ahly deserved to win because their players used their enormous experience. We made a mistake and they scored an early goal. After that we missed a lot of chances and they made good use of a counter attack and finished the game. We created many chances over both legs, but Ahly used theirs and won. I’m satisfied with my team’s performance.

Source: All Africa