Enyimba star Victor Mbaoma says they dare not lose away to Paradou of Algeria Sunday if they hope to become the first Nigerian winners of the CAF Confederation Cup.
“We have performed poorly in other African countries this season,” said the forward, referring to three defeats in four CAF matches.
Leaders Hassania Agadir of Morocco look set to win Group D, leaving second-place Enyimba, San Pedro of the Ivory Coast and Paradou to fight for the second ticket to the quarter-finals.
AFP Sport previews matchday three in the African version of the Europa League with giants Al Ahly and Zamalek of Egypt and TP Mazembe of the Democratic Republic of Congo among previous winners.
Egyptian big spenders Pyramids have hired former Croatia coach Ante Cacic after firing Frenchman Sebastien Desabre following two successive domestic league losses.
The Cairo outfit are away to fellow Egyptian club Al Masry in a top-of-the-table clash after both beat Enugu Rangers of Nigeria and Nouadhibou of Mauritania.
Mohamed Farouk of Pyramids and Nigerian Austin Amutu of Masry are among the leading scorers in the competition this season with five goals each.
Enugu have disappointed under new coach Salisu Yusuf, conceding seven goals in two losses, and must beat Nouadhibou in Nouakchott to have any hope of reaching the quarter-finals.
Renaissance Berkane of Morocco host Daring Club Motema Pembe of DR Congo in another top-of-the-table clash after each side collected four points from their first two matches.
Both beat ESAE, the first Benin club to reach the group stage of a CAF competition, and drew with Zanaco of Zambia.
Berkane were runners-up to Zamalek last season while it is 25 years since Motema Pembe achieved their only CAF success, winning the now defunct African Cup Winners Cup.
Third-place Zanaco are away to ESAE and securing maximum points in Porto-Novo would keep them in contention for a last-eight spot.
Guinean club Horoya have spared no expense as they chase a second CAF title 41 years after winning the African Cup Winners Cup.
Club owner Antonio Souare has assembled a multi-national squad, including veteran Burkina Faso forward Aristide Bance, who has played for 22 clubs in Africa, Asia and Europe.
They lead Djoliba of Mali on goal difference after beating Libyan visitors Al Nasr 3-0 in Conakry with Bance among the scorers after converting a penalty.
Bidvest Wits of South Africa, whose squad includes six-goal leading Confederation Cup scorer Gift Motupa, have home advantage over Nasr but only a win will keep them in contention.
Former African champions Enyimba have lost in Burkina Faso and Sudan in the Champions League and in Morocco after dropping to the Confederation Cup.
These results puzzle Mbaoma because, he says, the most successful Nigerian club in African competitions with four titles boast a squad “full of quality players”.
CAF newcomers Paradou stunned record three-time Confederation Cup winners CS Sfaxien of Tunisia in a qualifier, but were outplayed by Agadir in Algeria this month.
After beating Enyimba and Paradou without conceding a goal, Agadir are away to San Pedro, who need a win to remain genuine contenders for a place in the quarter-finals draw.