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Monday, 09 December 2019

Egypt's Ittihad stun holders Esperance of Tunisia to reach Arab Cup round of 16

Karim Farouk , Sunday 2 Sep 2018
Ittihad of Alexandria
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Egyptian side Ittihad of Alexandria held Tunisian giants Esperance to a 2-2 draw on Sunday in Rades to reach the last 16 of the Arab Club Champions Cup on the away-goal rule, causing the first upset of this year's edition.

Ittihad faced an uphill climb to progress after a 1-1 draw in Alexandria in the first leg, but they rose to the occasion to stun the home crowd in Rades.

They fell behind after seven minutes though when Algerian forward Youcef Belaili fired a low shot home from inside the area after a pull-back. 

However, Ittihad turned the match on its head with two first-half goals, with Khaled Kamar curling home from close range and Mohamed Nagi sending a deft header past the keeper.

Esperance mounted relentless pressure in the second half and were able to equalise through a goal from Cameroonian midfielder Franck Kom in the 52nd minute.

But despite their second-half dominance, they failed to score a precious winner to wave goodbye to the revamped competition that is the most financially rewarding in the region, with the eventual champions awarded $6 million.

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