Casablanca, May 31 (BNA): Wydad Casablanca’s winger Zuhair Al-Matraji scored the two goals to win the African Champions League title with a 2-0 victory over defending champion Al-Ahly in the final match at the noisy Mohamed V stadium.
Wydad celebrated its third continental title after its victories in 1992 and 2017, as Al-Ahly was denied its third title in a row after El-Matraji scored his first goal with a powerful long-range strike and snatched the second goal from close range.
The goals sent fans into a state of bliss, as the controversial final was played at Wydad Stadium after the Confederation of African Football said Morocco was the only bidder, after Senegal withdrew its bid.
Al-Ahly failed in an attempt to postpone the match and move to a neutral zone after its appeal to the Swiss-based Court of Arbitration for Sport was rejected last week.
Al-Ahly’s loss constitutes a greater disappointment for Egyptian football in 2022, after Senegal lost to Senegal in the final of the African Nations Cup in Cameroon, then lost to the same team in the qualifiers for a place in the World Cup in Qatar this year.
Wydad gave an early warning to the visitors when striker Jay Mbenza hit the crossbar with a powerful shot from the edge of the penalty area.
Then they advanced 15 minutes later as Al-Matraji received the ball 30 meters from the goal and unleashed a superb kick into the top corner that left Al Ahly goalkeeper Mohamed El Shennawy no chance.
The Egyptians rushed in with their passes and took the ball easily, but they looked dangerous from the set-pieces and had to equalize when defender Yasser Ibrahim headed in a corner kick.
This could have turned the competition in their favour, but Wydad doubled their lead three minutes into the second half when they stole Al Matarji before watching Al Ahly defender Mohamed Hani at the back post.
His initial shot was saved but he hit home in the rebound.
Al-Ahly tried to make its way back to the match and forced several saves from Wydad goalkeeper Reda Tagnoouti, but their night ended in disappointment despite the two teams controlling possession and seemed to be more daring than the two teams.