The CAF Champions League group stage has been shaken up ahead of the midweek match-day-two fixtures next week with Entente Setif of Algeria expelled from the competition.
CAF cracked its whip in a season of seemingly zero tolerance after crowd trouble and flares thrown on the pitch in the Algerian clubs 2-0 home loss to Mamelodi Sundowns on June 18 that also saw the match halted towards the end due to a pitch invasion.
“Chapter XII para 3 stipulates: “3. If the referee is forced to stop the match before the end of the regular time because of invasion of the field or aggression against the visiting team, the host team shall be considered loser and shall be eliminated from the competition, without prejudice to the sanctions existing in the regulations. Concerning the result of the said match, it is hence cancelled in conformity with the spirit of article XI.13 of the regulations stipulating: “If a team withdraws after the start of the group matches without having played half of the group matches, the overall results of the matches in which this team participated is cancelled,” CAF stated.
The decision means Sundowns away result is null and void and drop from top of Group B to bottom on zero points.
Zamalek, who beat Nigerian champions Enyimba 1-0 on last weekend away in Port Harcourt, lead of the now three team group.
Sundowns could reclaim top spot with a home win over Enyimba on June 29 in Pretoria.
It is looking like curse to play Sundowns in this years competition after the South African club advanced to the group stage when DR Congo club AS Vita, who had qualified to the group stage after eliminating the Pretoria club, were expelled for fielding an ineligible player.
Meanwhile, Zesco United lead Group A on 3 points ahead of their top of the table clash away to Wydad Casablanca in a late night kickoff on June 29.
Zesco beat Al Ahly 3-2 to take command of Group A on match day one on June 18.
Wydad have 3 points but with an inferior goal difference following their 1-0 away win over ASEC Mimosa in Abidjan on June 18.