2011 CAF Champions League
28 January – 13 November 2011|
55 (from 43 associations)|
Espérance ST (2nd title)|
278 (2.38 per match)|
The 2011 CAF Champions League (also known as the 2011 Orange CAF Champions League for sponsorship reasons) was the 47th edition of Africa's premier club football tournament organized by the Confederation of African Football (CAF), and the 15th edition under the current CAF Champions League format. The winner Espérance ST participated in the 2011 FIFA Club World Cup, and also played in the 2012 CAF Super Cup.
Association team allocation
Theoretically, up to 55 CAF member associations may enter the 2011 CAF Champions League, with the 12 highest ranked associations according to CAF 5-Year Ranking eligible to enter 2 teams in the competition. For this year's competition, CAF used 2005-09 5-Year ranking. As a result, a maximum of 67 teams could enter the tournament – although this level has never been reached.
CAF calculates points for each entrant association based on their clubs’ performance over the last 5 years in the CAF Champions League and CAF Confederation Cup, not taking into considering the running year. The criteria for points are the following:
||CAF Champions League
||CAF Confederation Cup|
|3rd place in groups
|4th place in groups
The points are multiplied by a coefficient according to the year as follow:
- 2009 – 5
- 2008 – 4
- 2007 – 3
- 2006 – 2
- 2005 – 1
This system is different from the one used for the 2010 CAF Champions League and previous years.
A similar procedure is used to rank clubs, with the exception that the results from 2006–2010 are used (with 2010 weighted by 5, 2009 by 4, and so on)
Below is the entrants list for the competition. Nations are shown according to their 2005–2009 CAF 5-Year Ranking – those with a ranking score have their rank and score indicated. Teams were also seeded using their individual team 2006–2010 5-Year Ranking. The top nine sides (shown in bold) received byes to the first qualifying round.
- Associations that did not enter a team: Cape Verde, Djibouti, Eritrea, Guinea-Bissau, Malawi, Mauritius, Namibia, Réunion, São Tomé and Príncipe, Somalia, Togo, Uganda
- Unranked associations have no ranking points and hence are equal 20th.
- Unranked teams have no rankings points and hence are equal 21st. Club ranking is determined only between teams qualified for the 2011 CAF Champions League.
Round and draw dates
Schedule of dates for 2011 competition.
|| Draw date
|| First leg
|| Second leg|
|| Preliminary round
|| 20 December 2010
| 28–30 January
|| 11–13 February|
| First round
|| 18–20 March
|| 1–3 April|
| Second round
|| 22–24 April
|| 6–8 May|
| Group stage
|| Matchday 1
|| 15 May 2011
| 15–17 July|
| Matchday 2
|| 29–31 July|
| Matchday 3
|| 12–14 August|
| Matchday 4
|| 26–28 August|
| Matchday 5
|| 9–11 September|
| Matchday 6
|| 16–18 September|
| Knock-out stage
|| 30 September–2 October
|| 14–16 October|
|| 4–6 November
|| 11–13 November|
† The second leg of the preliminary round matches are postponed to 25–27 February (or further to 4–6 March) in case the club have at least three players in the 2011 African Nations Championship.
The fixtures for the preliminary, first and second qualifying rounds were announced on 20 December 2010.
Qualification ties were decided over two legs, with aggregate goals used to determine the winner. If the sides were level on aggregate after the second leg, the away goals rule applied, and if still level, the tie proceeded directly to a penalty shootout (no extra time is played).
- Note 3: Al-Ittihad advanced to the second round after JC Abidjan withdrew. Tie was scheduled to be played at a neutral venue over one leg due to the political situations in Côte d'Ivoire and Libya, but match did not take place.
- Note 4: Tie played over one leg due to the political situation in Côte d'Ivoire.
- Note 5: Second leg abandoned on 90+5 minutes with Zamalek SC leading 2–1 (Club Africain leading 5–4 on aggregate) when Zamalek SC fans invaded the pitch.
- Note 6: TP Mazembe won 6–3 on aggregate, but were later disqualified for fielding an ineligible player. As a result, Simba played against Moroccan side Wydad Casablanca, which lost to TP Mazembe in the second round, in a play-off for a place in the group stage.
- Note 7: Ties scheduled to be played over one leg due to the political situations in Côte d'Ivoire and Libya.
- Note 8: Second leg abandoned on 81 minutes with the score at 1–1 (Al-Hilal leading 2–1 on aggregate) when Club Africain fans invaded the pitch.
- Note 9: TP Mazembe won 2–1 on aggregate, but were later disqualified for fielding an ineligible player in the first round. As a result, Wydad Casablanca played against Tanzanian side Simba, which lost to TP Mazembe in the first round, in a play-off for a place in the group stage.
The losing teams from the second round advance to the 2011 CAF Confederation Cup play-off round.
On 14 May 2011, the CAF announced that TP Mazembe from Congo DR were disqualified from the Champions League group stage following a complaint about the eligibility of TP Mazembe's player Janvier Besala Bokungu from Tanzanian side Simba, which lost to them in the first round. As a result, the Organising Committee decided that a replacement for the group stage would be determined by a play-off match at a neutral venue, between Simba and Moroccan side Wydad Casablanca, which lost to TP Mazembe in the second round.
The draw for the group stage was held on 15 May 2011. The eight teams were seeded into four pots, with each group containing one team from each pot.
|Key to colours in group tables|
| Group winners and runners-up advance to the Semifinals|
- Wydad Casablanca and Al-Ahly are ranked by their head-to-head records: Wydad Casablanca (2 pts, 0 GD, 4 GF, 3 away goals), Al-Ahly (2 pts, 0 GD, 4 GF, 1 away goal).