Ethiopian football at cross roads

Team Ethiopia

(CAF) It’s only March but in Ethiopia the football fraternity is already reeling under some disappointment with local clubs, Dedebit and Defence FC both dumbed out of CAF interclubs competition on the back of a poor run at Orange African Nations Championship (CHAN) by the Ethiopian national team made up of local based players. Ethiopian League champions Dedebit opened their a narrow 3-2 aggregate win over Zanzibar side KMKM in the preliminary round only to come unstuck in the first round against Tunisian side C.S Sfaxien. The Tunisians made it a second successive winning trip to Addis Ababa in consecutive years with a 2-1 against Dedebit. Last year in the Orange CAF Confederation Cup Sfaxien beat Ethiopia club side St George 3-1 in the group stage match in the same stadium. Once Dedebit was beaten at home not many expected them to won away in Sfax and the reality of no Ethiopian teams going beyond the first round loomed large.

Sfaxien won the return leg 2-0 to go through while Dedebit headed back to Addis Ababa to concentrate on domestic honours and complete a disappointing opening three months of football for Ethiopia. The country’s representatives in the Orange CAF Confederation Cup, Defence fared even worse in this year’s competition. The Army outfit succumbed to Kenya’s AFC Leopards in both games 2-1 at home and 2-0 away in Nairobi to exit at preliminary stage. Earlier in the year, Ethiopia made its debut at CHAN finals with many describing the qualification as confirmation that Ethiopian football was in ascendancy and the country was steadily climbing back to the top table of African football giants like was the case in the 60s and 70s. Ethiopia won the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in 1962 during the hey days when it regularly competed at the finals and making it on medals podium frequently. Read full Story on CAF…

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