Nigerian side, Rivers United suffered a jolt to their campaign after a 2-0 home loss to Club Africain of Tunisia on Sunday in Port Harcourt.
The result saw the first time any of the Group A quartet tasted defeat at home as hitherto bottom-placed, Kampala City Council Authority (KCCA) of Uganda won their corresponding home match, 3-1 against FUS Rabat of Morocco earlier on Sunday in Kampala.
With six points, Rivers drop to the depth of the table while their conquerors, Club Africain with nine points, move to the top jointly with KCCA. FUS Rabat sits third on six points.
After a goalless first half, the Tunisians shot into the lead in the 65th minute through a well taken free kick by Manoubi Haddad. The homers hopes dried out completely in the 88th minute when captain Austin Festus, scored an own goal after deflecting past his goalkeeper a cross by Mokhtar Belkhiter.
Club Africain look set join fellows CS Sfaxien in the knockout stage when they play host to KCCA next Friday in Tunis. Rivers, on the other hand, will travel to Morocco next Friday to face FUS Rabat in the ultimate match of the group.
Head Coach of Club Africain, Chibeb Ellili was a happy man after achieving a result which took his closer to place among the last eight.
“We came to Port Harcourt with determination to pick a point which is the reason I played three attackers and they gave me what I needed.
“The first half was not good for both teams, so I took the advantage in the second half because we observed that there was no unity among the Rivers United players so we took the advantage and it gave us the day.
“Before the game, I told my players to be focused because we all know that the game will not be easy. Every team needs good result to survive the group and they played to my instructions.
“With this result I think we still not comfortable because KCCA defeated FUS Rabat 3-1 so we need to win our last game to qualify from the group. We will go home, work harder to make it happen,” Ellili said.
Rivers captain Festus said: “the game has come and gone although it is a bad result and sad news for all of us. I caused the second goal and I am apologising to the fans.
“We did not play well. We have to prepare well for the last game against FUS Rabat and hopefully we can win away from home”.
02.07.2017 Kampala KCCA (Uganda) 3-1 FUS Rabat (Morocco)
02.07.2017 Port Harcourt Rivers United (Nigeria) 0-2 Club Africain (Tunisia)
30.06.2017 Algiers MC Alger (Algeria) 2-0 Platinum Stars (South Africa)
02.07.2017 Lobamba Mbabane Swallows (Swaziland) 1-3 CS Sfaxien (Tunisia)
30.06.2017 Alexandria Smouha (Egypt) 1-1 Zesco (Zambia)
01.07.2017 El Obeid Hilal El Obeid (Sudan) 2-0 Recreativo do Libolo (Angola)
01.07.2017 Conakry Horoya (Guinea) 0-0 Supersport (South Africa)
02.07.2017 Libreville CF Mounana (Gabon) 0-1 TP Mazembe (DR Congo)