How do you determine the best football club in Africa? This is a difficult question that CAFCL Gazette has finally answered. We have come up with a criteria that balances performances in CAF Champions League, CAF Confederations Cup and the League.
What is very interesting about CAFCL Gazette Power Rankings is that it emphasizes the form the teams are in. We also weighted the quality of the leagues and noted difference in CAFCL and CAFCC. The result is that the most in-form teams in Africa will be deservedly top of the rankings.
Did I mention that the CAFCL Gazette Power Rankings tracks over 300 African teams? Haha.
We will be sharing with you the top 20 African clubs at the start of every month. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has brought football to a halt. Don’t let that stop you from enjoying this accurate power ranking of African clubs *wink*
20. Etoile Sahel (36 pts)
The Sousse team has struggled in the Tunisian league. The team is ranked 6th and it looks increasingly unlikely that they will qualify for CAFCL next seasons if football was to resume. The team’s saving grace has been reaching the CAFCL quarterfinals otherwise they wouldn’t make top 20.
19. Kaizer Chiefs (45 pts)
Ernst Middendorp’s team looked to be running away with the PSL at one point. But they have struggled for consistency in their recent league matches. It is now no longer obvious that Kaizer Chiefs will become South African champions.
18. Al Merreikh (46 pts)
The Sudanese team may have been knocked out of the CAF Champions League ages ago but their strong league form has kept them relevant. They are in a run-in for the title with Al Hilal so we expect them to last in the top 20 this season (again, we hope football resumes).
17. Horoya AC (48 pts)
Horoya AC is the only team not in North Africa that is still competition in CAF interclub competitions. They will have to play Pyramids FC for a place in the CAFCC final. Horoya is also putting its best foot forward in the Guinean Ligue 1.
16. Forest Rangers (50 pts)
Finally, a team from Zambia that is not ZESCO Utd of Zanaco FC. Forest Rangers find themselves on our list by virtue of their surprise no.1 league position and form in recent Zambian Super League matches. We are not sure if they will hold though because a lot of teams are involved in the title race in Zambia.
15. Mouloudia Oudja (52.5 pts)
The club from Oudja has taken advantage of the involvement of 4 Moroccan clubs in CAFCL and CAFCC to get themselves into a good league rank. Their form has been wavering in the last few league matches and with the likes of Raja Casablanca and RS Berkane set to refocus on Botola, it will be interesting to see if they hold up.
14. Maniema Union (53 pts)
What is a relatively unknown DR Congo club doing in the CAFCL Gazette Power Rankings? For one, they are giving Vita Club a run for their money in the race of a CAF Champions League spot. Maniema Union is also enjoying great form in the Linafoot and we are betting on them to keep it up.
13. CR Belouizdad (54 pts)
CRB started the season with so much promise. They even looked like knocking out Pyramids FC from CAFCC. This did not happen and here we are now. CR Belouizdad are still top of the Algerian Ligue and they may just nick it because of the game in hand. The league stoppage has also given them time to regroup.
12. Wydad Casablanca (56 pts)
Wydad Casablanca would be in our top 10 if they were winning league matches. Yes, they are top of the Botola but they had to fire their Sebastien Desabre because of poor league form. The team is in the CAFCL semis. Therefore, we expect nothing but an upward trend from WAC if football resumes.
11. Plateau United (60 pts)
Plateau United are in this list because they are top of the Nigerian Premier League and are enjoying a superb run of form. Let’s hope Abdul Maikaba gets the chance to keep it up.
10. ES Setif (62.5 pts)
ES Setif has gone on a run of 10 league matches without defeat and now find themselves in the title race. The team’s fortunes have transformed dramatically ever since they brought on, Tunisian, Nabil Kouki as coach. Anybody who loves CAFCL hopes ES Setif will be one of Algeria’s representatives next season.
9. Al Hilal (72 pts)
Al Hilal struggled with coaching changes but ultimately put up a good fight in the CAF Champions League. The Omdurman side is also in command in the Sudani Premier League title race. We don’t expect them to fall off, as a result.
8. Pyramids FC (78 pts)
The question is always whether Pyramids FC will emerge as a real powerhouse in Egypt. They are doing their best to demonstrate that this season. The nouveau-riche team has dumped controversy for entertaining attacking football. Pyramids has made it to the CAFCC semifinals as favourite and are contesting for 2nd place in the Egyptian league – where they enjoy good form.
7. Sundowns (83 pts)
Can we first agree that Sundowns is the most successful team in South Africa. Nobody cares about titles won before the professional PSL era. Sundowns had a busy February and March yet maintained great league form. They were unable to go further in the CAF Champions League though. This will give them room to focus on PSL.
6. Vita Club (85 pts)
Vita Club were underwhelming in the CAFCL group stage. They barely put up a fight. On the other hand, their league form has been the opposite of this. Vita Club is not actually fighting for the league title but to finish second and qualify for CAFCL again. I am sure fans want to see new representatives from DR Congo. What do you want?
5. CS Sfaxien (91.5 pts)
CS Sfaxien are putting their best foot forward to qualify for CAFCL from the competitive Tunisia Ligue 1. And they have one of the best squads in Africa at that. CSS were regaining momentum before the league was halted, after having succumbed to back-to-back league defeats.
4. TP Mazembe (102 pts)
Is there any doubt that TP Mazembe will cruise to the Linafoot title again? Their league form shows this. But they will be beating themselves up for getting knocked out of the CAFCL despite coming out if the group stage as a tournament favourite.
3. FUS Rabat (108 pts)
FUS Rabat have wowed Morocco with a run of wins that has seen them rise to 2nd in the league. The club won the Rabat Derby against FAR Rabat and also beat RS Berkane during this run. FUS have made a name in the CAFCC and it will be interesting to see if they can maintain the form to qualify for the tournament yet again. Raja Casablanca already have that 2nd place in sight because of games-in-hand.
2. Esperance Tunis (117 pts)
Esperance Tunis remain reeling after being knocked out the CAF Champions League. The Parc B team were 2-time defending champions and had just come off a 20-match unbeaten run. Esperance Tunis only has the league to focus on now and this has been easy for them. Esperance is enjoying good results and remains unbeaten with half the league matches played.
1. Al Ahly (121 pts)
Was there ever any doubt about who the number will be? Al Ahly have been terrific in the Egyptian league. The Cairo team has only dropped 2 points in 17 league matches played. The team struggled to find rhythm in the CAF Champions League but are now in the semifinals as competition favorite. This could be a record breaking season for Al Ahly (should it be allowed to conclude on the pitch).