Confederation Cup: Hosts struggle in last eight first legs

The Confederation Cup trophy
The Confederation Cup is Africa's second-tier club competition

None of the four hosts of the Confederation Cup quarter-final first legs managed to earn victories on Sunday.

Zambia's Zanaco lost 3-0 to Egypt's Pyramids in Lusaka while Morocco's Hassania Agadir thrashed host Al Nasr 5-0, in a match played in Egypt due to the security problems in Libya.

Nigeria's Enyimba were held to a 1-1 draw by visiting Horoya of Guinea and there was a 2-2 stalemate in Egypt between Al Masry and Morocco's Renaissance Berkane.

The four second leg ties are set for 8 March.

Karim el Berkaoui scored his second hat-trick this season with Senegalese Malick Cisse adding the other two goals in Hassania Agadir's thrashing of Al Nasr.

El Berkaoui needed only nine minutes to score his previous hat-trick, at home to San Pedro of the Ivory Coast in a group match.

His treble against Nasr took 47 minutes with the first and second goals coming in the first half before the forward netted again 11 minutes after half-time.

Mouhcine Iajour opened and closed the scoring for last year's Confederation Cup runners-up Renaissance Berkane in their draw away to Al Masry in Suez.

Muftah Taktak had levelled in the first minute of the second half for Masry, who then took the lead when Zouhair Laaroubi conceded an own-goal just past the hour.

But with Renaissance staring at a fourth away defeat in the competition, experienced African campaigner Iajour came to the rescue with a goal eight minutes from time.

Expensively assembled Pyramids of Egypt made it 11 wins in 13 continental club matches this season by overwhelming previously unbeaten Zanaco.

Zanaco faced Pyramids with confidence born from a six win-four draw Confederation Cup record this season, but conceded twice within 24 minutes and never recovered.

Ali Gabr and Mohamed Farouk, with his sixth Confederation Cup goal, were the first-half scorers and Abdallah Said completed the rout by converting a penalty.

Enyimba, the only former African champions among the title contenders, failed to defend an early lead and had to settle for a 1-1 home draw with Horoya.

Austin Oladapo had given the Nigerians a first-half lead against the Guineans, who have been trophy-less in Africa since winning the 1978 Cup Winners Cup.

But Enyimba's hopes of becoming the first Nigerian club to lift the trophy suffered a major blow when Boniface Haba levelled for Horoya 19 minutes from time.

The second legs of the quarter-finals are set for 8 March with with Pyramids poised to progress to face Horoya while Berkane and Agadir appear set to clash in an all-Moroccan affair.

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