June 19, 2021

Mosimane off to Caf Champions League flyer as Al Ahly beat Wydad Casablanca

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The former Mamelodi Sundowns coach has edged closer to what would be his second continental crown

Newly-appointed Al-Ahly head coach Pitso Mosimane guided his team to a 2-0 win over Wydad Casablanca in a Caf Champions League first leg semi-final encounter at the Stade Mohamed V on Saturday.

The tone was set as early as the fourth minute when Mohamed Kafsha capitalised on an error by Yahya Jabrane to put the visitors in front against a Wydad Casablanca side who were champions in 2017 and are also coached by a former Sundowns manager Miguel Angel Gamondi.

The Moroccan side had a great opportunity to restore parity when they were awarded a penalty in the 43rd minute, but the chance was wasted as Badi Aouk struck his spot kick tamely and enabled Mohamed El Shenawy to make the save.

Victory was wrapped up by Al Ahly when Ali Maaloul slotted home a 63rd-minute penalty.

Known as ‘the club of the century’, the Egyptian outfit are aiming to extend their record Champions League triumphs from eight to nine.

Mosimane meanwhile is looking to claim his second Caf Champions League crown after his success with South African side Mamelodi Sundowns in 2016.

Sundowns were in fact knocked out of this season’s Champions League by Al Ahly in the quarters, going down 3-1 on aggregate to the team from Cairo.

That was before Mosimane’s switch to the Egyptian giants, and he now seems keen on making the most of his second shot at the crown following a solid victory on Saturday night away in Morocco.

The second leg encounter will take place on Friday 23 October in Cairo. The other semi-final is being contested between Raja Casablanca and Zamalek and the first-leg match takes place on Sunday 18 October in Morocco’s capital.

Ahly and Wydad met in the Caf CL final in 2017, with each club featuring in one subsequent final since then.

Wydad missed out on the title last time around after Esperance were declared champions following a controversial final overshadowed by a VAR scandal, and the Tunisians also defeated Ahly 4-3 on aggregate the year before.