Mohamed 'Geddo' Nagy confirmed his recent return to scoring form with the winner as Al Ahly of Egypt beat Sunshine Stars of Nigeria 1-0 in Cairo to reach the CAF Champions League final. A deflected shot past goalkeeper Moses Ocheje after 28 minutes at the empty June 30 stadium settled the second leg of the semi-final after a 3-3 draw in Nigeria two weeks ago.
Record six-time African champions Ahly advanced 4-3 overall and face bitter rivals and title holders Esperance of Tunisia over two legs during November, with the Egyptians having home advantage first. The winner will book their ticket to FIFA Club World Cup in Japan.
Geddo, who became the five-goal star of the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations after entering the tournament as an unknown, had scored only once in the Champions League this season before the semi-finals. But a first-leg brace followed by the second-leg winner lifts him to four goals, two less than leading Ahly scorer Mohamed Aboutrika, who is serving a two-month club suspension for refusing to play in a recent game.
Geddo gunning for goals
Geddo could have finished the return match with four goals as the woodwork denied him twice in the opening half and once after the break while Sunshine substitute Harrison Egbune rattled the crossbar in the latter stages. Ahly controlled most of a match that rarely rose above the ordinary and was played behind closed doors with Egyptian authorities refusing to allow spectators amid post-Arab spring security fears.
Competing in the Champions League for the first time this season, Sunshine seemed overawed apart from a brief second-half spell when Tamen Medrano, Dele Olorundare and Egbune threatened goalkeeper Sherif Ekrami.
Esperance booked a third consecutive final appearance after overcoming TP Mazembe from Congo DR 1-0 at home Saturday following a goalless first encounter. Defender Mohamed Ben Mansour snatched the winner 20 minutes from time, sneaking in at the far post to steer a deflected free kick past goalkeeper Muteba Kidiaba.