Hearts not perturbed with Esperance pairing- Robin Gnagne

Accra Hearts of Oak captain Robin Gnagne is hopeful of making it to the group phase of the Caf Confederation Cup despite tough draw against Tunisian giants Esperance.

Ghana Premier League side Accra Hearts of Oak have been drawn against Tunisian side Esperance in the third round of the Caf Confederations Cup after the draw was made on Tuesday.

Esperance had been surprise elimination from the Champions League when they were beaten by El Merreikh last weekend. Esperance paid the price for conceding an away goal after losing the opening leg 1-0 and winning the second leg 2-1 at home.

The Phobians, who will play first in Tunis before the second leg in Accra, are fresh from a win against Mali’s Djoliba and will relish meeting the two-time Caf Champions League winners.

“This is a tough draw but we are not afraid of Esperance, we are aware of their quality and we will face them accordingly,” Gnagne told Goal

“In football anything can happen, the mere fact that they had to drop from the Champions league to the Confederation Cup is the same way we can also eliminate them.

“I am very hopeful of qualifying ahead of them so I entreat on our fans not to panic.

“What we need to do now is to prepare well and go into the first leg for a good result so the second leg can become a mere formality.”

Hearts will have home advantage in the decisive second leg after the first leg in Tunis on the weekend of 15-17 May.

It is a repeat of the 2000 CAF Champions’ League final when the Phobians defeated Esperance 2-1 in North Africa before outclassing them 3-1 in Accra to win their one and only Africa title.

Hearts will make it to the lucrative money zone of the competition if they are able to defeat Esperance.

No Ghanaian team has been to the group phase of the competition since Berekum Chelsea’s attempt in 2012.

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