Morocco’s Wyadad Casablanca were able to hold Egyptian Champions Al Ahly to a 1-1 draw in the first leg of the finals of the 2017 CAF Champions League.
The match was played at the Borg De Arab in Egyptian city of Alexandria where Ahly had previously beaten WAC 2-0 in the group stages of the competition.
Ahly got off to a flying start as early as the 3rd minute when Zakaria bounced unto a good pass from El Said with a powerful shoot to make it 1-0 for the Egyptians.
The comfortable lead gave the home supporters the hope of cruising to victory against the Casablanca based club but it did not last much long when WAC equalised after just 15 minutes of play.
Ounajem played a good cross for Bencharki, who scored and restored parity for the visitors.
On the 27th minute WAc were forced to make changes as Khadrouf came in for Ounajem because of a bad injury.
Azarou nearly made it 2-1 fr Ahly after 30 minutes of play but was denied by Wydad goalkeeper Laaroubi who save Azarou’s effort from close range.
The consistent pressure from Ahly could not yield any viable results as Noussir, the Wydad defender, had been solid at the back just before the half-time break.
Both sides returned for the second half more determined to get the second goal as we witnessed an end to end action.
All efforts by Ahly to force the WAC defence to commit mistakes for the second were not successful.
With ten minutes to play, WAC decided to sit back and soak the pressure from the Ahly attack as the introduction of Moteb could not change matters for the Egyptian side as the Moroccans resisted any form of attack to give a goal.
Ahly looked more disappointed when the referee blew his whistle for the end of the game as both sides will have to meet again in Casablanca for the second leg in a weeks time t decide who goes to the FIFA World Club Championship.
Al Ahly XI: Ekramy; Fathy, Nagiub, Saad, Maaloul, El-Sulaya, Rabia, Zakaria, Abdallah, Ajayi, Azarou.
Wydad XI: Laaroubi, Rabeh, Ouattara, Noussir, Saidi, El Karti, Nakach, Gaddarine, Bencharki, Ounajem, El Haddad.