Egyptian heavyweights Al Ahly beat the Kaizer Chiefs 3-0 in Morocco on Saturday night to become the first team in history to be crowned ten-time African champions.
In-form striker Mohamed Sherif scored one and did as Ahly, after a relatively even opening, took full advantage after Chefs’ Happy Mashiane was sacked shortly before the break.
The Cairo team quickly took advantage of the second half, first thanks to Mohamed Sherif with a nice chip, then Mohamed ‘Afsha’ Magdy before Amr El Solia pierced Sherif’s smart heel.
Ahly’s tally of ten African crowns is now double that of their closest challengers, with city rivals Zamalek and DR Congo’s TP Mazembe both tied with five apiece.
Al Ahly coach Pitso Mosimane wins three impressive Champions League titles with the Egyptians defending the trophy they won last year while his first triumph, and arguably the biggest, came with Mamelodi Sundowns in 2016.
One of his more unusual successes, having come against the very team he supported in his youth, made him the second Al Ahly coach to conquer Africa two years ago. following, after the Portuguese Manuel José in 2005 and 2006.
Given his recent form, it was Sherif who broke through at the Mohamed VI Stadium in Casablanca to bring his tally to nine in his last eight games before the striker helped wrap up the win by knocking out his compatriot. Egyptian international El Solia.
The starters entered the match as overwhelming favorites, with their record 14th appearance in the final of Africa’s club football flagship event against a debut team.
Playing for the first time with new coach Stuart Baxter, the Chiefs were tied until Mashiane went red – tipping the final to the most successful club in African history.
Before the match Mosimane had hinted that cutting the supply line from the flanks and set pieces could thwart the Chiefs and it turned out that the South Africans failed to get around the goalkeeper. Ahly Mohamed El Shenawy.
Ahly climb to 22 African titles as Chiefs still claim only one, the late 2001 African Cup Winners’ Cup, but after finishing eighth in the championship, some 31 points behind champion Sundowns, reach the final was a success in itself.
Al Ahly, meanwhile, continues and hopes to impress at the Club World Cup in the same way they did in 2020 when they beat Brazilian Palmeiras and won the game against European champions Bayern Munich, in an impressive semi-final loss.
Before that, El Shenawy and five of Ahly’s teammates have more football to play as they travel to Tokyo ahead of Egypt’s Olympic participation later this month.