A memorable night in Casablanca – African Champions League Final

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Wydad win the African Champions League.

Casablanca is not a particularly quiet place. And when one of their big football teams wins a continental trophy it was definitely time to make some noise. So from the stadium to the medina, along the main boulevards, the people came out to celebrate. After a gap of 25 years Wydad had won their second CAF Champions League title. They had beaten multiple winners Al Ahly of Egypt on a memorable night in Casablanca.

Level at the interval.

Following a first leg that had ended 1-1 the second encounter began with the Egyptians looking more assured. The home side took a long time to string passes together. To the accompaniment of ear-splitting whistling from the home fans Al Ahly dominated those early stages. But without troubling Laaroubi in the home goal. Gradually the Moroccans developed some attacks and they struck the bar on the half hour. Al Ahly replied when Zakaria was put through only for his shot to be blocked. We reached half-time goalless which favoured Wydad.

Play it again, Achraf.

The second half started with a show of pyrotechnics. Once the smoke had cleared the smooth pace of Wydad wide-man El Haddad continued to catch the eye. Then with twenty minutes remaining the moment came that will be remembered for many years. Achraf Bencharki, a scorer from the first leg, worked space down the right. His partially deflected cross allowed the determined El Karti to rise above the defenders to head in the winner. Deafening noise reverberated around the 50,000 bouncing fans.

A memorable night in Casablanca.

As the clock wound down Al Ahly became more desperate. But to no avail. Despite their promising start they had failed to create enough chances and the home side had taken their opportunity. The Egyptians were left to protest at the officials while Wydad, and a lot of Casablanca, would revel in the moment. Crowds ran to the stadium to join in the celebrations and car horns blared. It had been a memorable night in Casablanca.

 

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