Morocco to host CAF Champions League final despite Ahly plea

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JOHANNESBURG, South Africa  — The 2022 CAF Champions League final will be hosted by Morocco on May 30, a Confederation of African Football (CAF) official confirmed on Tuesday.اضافة اعلان

“CAF received bids from Senegal and Morocco and, after the subsequent withdrawal of the Senegalese bid, Morocco has been awarded the hosting rights,” the spokesman said.

CAF did not say where in Morocco the highlight of the African club season would be played, with Agadir, Casablanca, Marrakech, Rabat, and Tangiers possible venues.

The decision to stage a second successive Champions League final in Morocco will upset title-holders Al-Ahly from Egypt, who are likely to play Moroccan club Wydad Casablanca in the final.

In the semi finals first legs last weekend, Wydad beat Petro Luanda 3–1 in Angola while Al-Ahly triumphed 4–0 at home to Entente Setif from Algeria.

The return matches are scheduled for Casablanca and Algiers this Friday and Saturday.

Hopeful of reaching the final as they chase a record third consecutive title, 10-time African champions Al-Ahly appealed to CAF president Patrice Motsepe last weekend for a neutral venue.

In a letter, Al-Ahly said the match should not be staged in the country of one of the finalists so that “equal rights are preserved”.

“Giving one of the four teams home advantage in the final contradicts fair-play standards,” added the Cairo club.

From the second edition of the competition in 1966 until 2019 the Champions League was played over two legs.

But when Wydad refused to continue playing after a goal was disallowed during the second leg of the 2019 final at Esperance of Tunisia, CAF switched to single-match title deciders. 

Cairo hosted an all-Egypt affair between Al-Ahly and Zamalek in 2020, and Al-Ahly triumphed again the following season, against Kaizer Chiefs of South Africa in Casablanca.

Now, CAF says in a statement they are reconsidering the decision and possibly reverting to two-leg finals.

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