Punching Below their Weight

Satish Sekar
By Satish Sekar July 30, 2018 00:04

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Punching Below their Weight

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By Satish Sekar © Satish Sekar (July 29th 2018)

The pride of Ivorian football? Actually there’s no doubt about that. ASEC Mimosas boast 26 league titles, 20 Coupes de Côte d’Ivoire de Football and 16 Félix Houphouët-Boigny (Ivorian Supercups) too. They dominate Ivorian football. Last season they won the double. But in African continental football, ASEC Mimosas punch well below their domestic weight.

Established in 1948 they have only one African title to their name. They never won the Cup of African Champions Clubs – the predecessor of the CAF Champions League. ASEC’s only African titles came in 1998 with the CAF Champions League and the following year’s CAF Supercup.

Their last notable run in the Champions League was to the semi-final in 2006. Since 2011 they have failed to trouble the record-keepers in that competition. This for a team whose Académie Mimo Sifcom (AMS) was once the pride of Africa – a short-cut to the big time, but ASEC’s misfortunes coincide with the demise of AMS.

A disagreement between the French former footballer Jean-Marc Guillou and ASEC led to a parting of the ways and a club academy that is no longer the pride of Africa. It shows on the pitch, as the cream of the AMS crop near the end of their careers, but not for ASEC. The current team is largely unknown, certainly in Europe and outside of the Ivory Coast, probably Africa too.

They’re hardly pulling up trees in the CAF Confederation Cup either. Propping up Group A, if they have any ambitions of progressing in that tournament, they’ll need to overturn the odds tonight in Casablanca and avenge the 1-0 defeat in Abidjan.

Satish Sekar
By Satish Sekar July 30, 2018 00:04