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CAF Champions League: Constantine Humble Ismaily

CS Constantine overcame Ismaily 3-2 in the 2018/19 CAF Champions League Group C match at the Mohamed Hamlaoui Stadium in Algeria on Saturday.

CS Constantine overcame Ismaily 3-2 in the 2018/19 CAF Champions League Group C match at the Mohamed Hamlaoui Stadium in Algeria on Saturday.

Goals from Nasreddine Zaalani, Nassim Yettou, and Dylan Bahamboula saw the Smurfs emerge the winners, taking them to the top of the table with 10 points, while the Mango Boys remain at the bottom with one point.

Ismaily had the stronger start as Ismail Belkacemi threatened the opening goal, but his low dive was easily gathered by Mohammed Fawzy on 10 minutes.

Constantine settled and went close to a breakthrough after Walid Bencherifa failed to direct his volley on target following a cross from Dylan Bahamboula.

They would live to rue the missed opportunity as Ismaily went ahead through Emad Hamdi, when he beat the keeper at his near post with a half-volley following an inviting cross from left-back Tarek Taha.

Nassim Yettou had the first effort on target for Constantine after a well-worked move, but his effort from 35-yards drifted outside.

Zaalani leveled the score at the stroke of halftime when he outjumped his marker and powered a bullet header off the crossbar as Ismaily showed the first signs of their aerial weaknesses.

Ismaily eventually reclaimed the lead a few minutes after the restart through Namibian striker Benson Shilongo, who slotted home a supply from Khaleq.

Constantine stuttered to outweigh the visitors, as Sid Ali Lamri missed a sitter from Benayas’s pass in the 57th minute.

Nassim Yettou leveled the matters in the 67th minute with a simple header on the rebound after Ismaily keeper Mohamed Fawzi parried a weak header from Dylan Bahamboula into his path.

The Mango Boys had a great break in the 70th minute that saw Youssef’s shot deflected onto the top of the crossbar for a corner, which was cleared.

With nine minutes to full-time, Bahamboula netted for the home side with a header from a left-wing cross striking Fawzy’s hands and going in.

Ismaily came within inches of equalizing, when Emad Hamdy tried to clear the ball on the edge of his own box, but saw his clearance rebound of Islam Chahrour and head towards goal.

The Mango Boys continued to power forward and created numerous half-chances, but were denied by some excellent last-ditch defending and good organization from Constantine.

Constantine now host Tunisian side Club Africain in their next match, while Ismaily welcomes TP Mazembe.

The teams

Constantine: Chamseddine Rahmani (GK), Houcine Benayad, Nasreddine Zaalani, Islam Chahrour, Yassine Salhi, Walid Bencherifa, Nassim Yettou, Sid Ali Lamri, Dylan Bahamboula, Ismail Belkacemi, Abdenour Belkheir

Ismaily SC: Mohamed Fawzy (GK), Osama Ibrahim, Baher El Mohamady, Mohamed Magdy, Tarek Taha, Emad Hamdy, Ibrahim Abdel Khaleq, Mohamed Sadek, Abderahman Magdy, Benson Shilongo, Mohamed Ahmed Youssef

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