Champions League: Holders Esperance snatch late draw at Horoya

Esperance and Tunisia's Anice Badri
A late goal from Anice Badri saw Esperance grab a draw in Guinea against Horoya

Africa Champions League holders Esperance of Tunisia snatched lucky last-gasp draw in Guinea against Horoya.

There were wins at home for Morocco's Wydad Casablanca, Lobi Stars of Nigeria while Algeria's CS Constantine won away as the Champions League group stage kicked off.

Anice Badri scored in the fourth minute of injury time for Esperance to cancel out a second-half goal from Ghana-born former Burkina Faso international Ocansey Mandela.

Horoya, who were quarter-finalists last season, were the superior side, keeping Esperance goal Rami Jeridi busy throughout.

Antonio Souare, the multi-millionaire chairman of the Guinean club, has told his players that he expects nothing less than a Champions League semi-finals place this season.

Moroccans Wydad, who won the competition a second time two years ago, scored four second-half goals to thrash Ivory Coast visitors Asec Mimosas 5-2 in Rabat.

Ismail el Haddad and Wonlo Coulibaly exchanged first-half goals before Nigerian Michael Babatunde, Zouhair el Moutaraji, Walid el Karti and Badie Aouk netted for Wydad.

Salif Bagate scored a late consolation goal for the Abidjan outfit, who did not concede in four qualifiers.

The win took Wydad to the top of Group A on goal difference from Nigerians Lobi Stars, who came from behind to defeat 2016 champions Mamelodi Sundowns from South Africa 2-1 in Enugu.

Sundowns have never won a group game in west Africa, drawing once and losing four, including two in Nigeria.

Liberian Antony Laffor gave the visiting side a first-half lead they surrendered in the final minute of the half when Ivorian Yaya Kone levelled with a penalty.

After having an early second-half goal disallowed, Lobi took the lead a minute later with Samuel Mathias punishing sloppy defending to grab the match-winner.

Abdenour Belkheir scored with just a minute left to play to earn group newcomers Constantine from Algeria a surprise 1-0 win away to former champions Club Africain from Tunisia in Rades.

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