Champions League: El Moutaraji scores twice as Wydad Casablanca beat Al Ahly

By Nick Cavell & Oluwashina OkelejiBBC Sport Africa
Zouheir El Moutaraji celebrates the opening goal of the 2022 Africa Champions League final
Zouheir El Moutaraji scored a spectacular goal to set Wydad Casablanca on their way to victory.

Zouheir El Moutaraji scored both goals for Morocco's Wydad Casablanca as they won the African Champions League title with a 2-0 win over Egypt's Al Ahly.

It is the third time that Wydad have been crowned African champions after winning in 1992 and 2017, and it also stopped Ahly winning a third straight title.

El Moutaraji scored a spectacular opener in the first half before adding the second just minutes after the break to seal the win for Wydad in front of their own raucous fans, who had filled the stadium hours before the match.

The final was controversially hosted at Wydad's home ground in Casablanca, as supporters were allowed in to watch the final for the first time since 2019 after the global Covid-19 pandemic.

Wydad Casablaca fans
Wydad Casablaca fans packed their Mohammed V Stadium to create an intimidating atmosphere for Al Ahly

Wydad started the stronger and their first chance came in the 10th minute when Congo-Brazzaville striker Guy Mbenza saw his fierce strike from just outside the area hit the bar.

Just four minutes later Wydad took the lead when El Moutaraji cut in from the left wing and unleashed an unstoppable shot into the top corner past Mohamed El Shenawy from 30 yards out, to send the home fans into wild celebration.

The goal sparked the reigning champions into action as they began to dominate possession and pressed the Moroccans when they had the ball.

That domination almost paid off in the 24th minute when Yasser Ibrahim escaped his markers but headed a corner from Ali Maaloul just wide of the post.

Ten minutes later another Maaloul corner was met on the edge of the six-yard box by Taher Mohamed, but he could only head wide once again.

Al Ahly began the second half going forward but it was Wydad who struck first after just two minutes of the restart.

A counter-attack saw the ball swung in from the right by Ayoub El Amloud which El Moutraji connected with ahead of Ahly's Mohamed Hany.

His initial shot was parried by El Shenawy, allowing the Wydad striker to smash home and double his side's lead.

For all their possession Al Ahly's first shot on target did not come until the 73rd minute when substitute Afsha's shot from outside the area was well saved by Ahmed Reda Tagnaouti diving to his right.

Tagnaouti was called into action again eight minutes later as he saved a close-range toe poke from Mohsen Salah before Mohamed Sherif's follow-up was blocked by El Amloud.

The Wydad Casablanca keeper then produced another outstanding stop at the feet of South Africa striker Percy Tau as he raced into the area.

Ahly continued to press but were unable to find a way back into the game, much to the delight of the home crowd who celebrated wildly at the end.

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