Ghana’s sole representative Aduana Stars have achieved their initial objective for this year’s Caf Champions League after progressing from the preliminary stage following an aggregate 2-1 win over Libyan side Al Tahady on Wednesday.
It is a feat that keeps eluding a number of Ghanaian clubs in recent years which Aduana earlier promised to address while celebrating their domestic league title few months ago.
Hosting the second leg against Al Tahady proved to be advantageous for the Dormaa Ahenkro-based team, as they were able to score two crucial goals unlike in Egypt where they suffered a 1-0 defeat, but stood their ground to avoid a drubbing.
The lesson we learnt from that encounter was Aduana’s decency on the road. They played to instruction and were highly disciplined on the pitch.
However, those qualities would be put to a tougher test in the upcoming round, as Aduana will be playing the 2nd leg away from home, against a veteran of the competition, Algeria’s ES Setif, who have won the Caf Champions League twice, in 1998 and 2014.
Setif, who are Algerian Ligue 1 defending champions, are not having a brilliant run in the local topflight currently, as they sit 8th on the 16-team log, with10 points behind leaders CS Constantine.
Could that be some good news for Aduana? Not likely. Setif might want to hold on to the Caf competition in order to save their season, by facing all potential opponents with ultimate seriousness.
Aduana need to begin preparations for the encounter as soon as possible, and unlike Al Tahady, there is enough material on Setif to work with ahead of the meeting that comes up in two weeks.
Despite the mounting pressure on the Ogya lads to make Ghana proud following the elimination of Asante Kotoko from the Caf Confederation Cup, coach Yussif Abubakar ought to ease up and prepare his charges in a serene environment in order preserve the virtues of the team.
The match would likely be decided in the return leg and not in Dormaa Ahenkro where the first leg will take place.
Aduana must be composed enough to avoid any wreck at Stade 8 Mai 1945 where ES Setif would leave no stone unturned to amend whatever outcome they reaped from the first leg.