RS Berkane of Morocco on Sunday night won the Confederation Cup final after defeating Egyptians Pyramids 1-0 to claim their first African title.
Playing at home in Rabat, the Moroccan club got the game’s lone goal in the 15th minute after Issoufou Dayo turned home from close range after Pyramids failed to clear a free-kick.
Berkane will now contest the 2020-21 African Super Cup as a team that has never won the Moroccan league title celebrates its greatest success.
A fractious contest could have been decided after 71 minutes but Haamdi Lachir blazed over when well-placed for Berkane, who had an extra day to prepare after winning their semi-final on Monday.
The miss came minutes after Mohamed Farouk and then substitute John Antwi came closest for big-spending Pyramids on a frustrating night in the deserted Prince Moulay Abdellah Stadium.
Reduced to ten men in the dying moments after Bark El Helali was dismissed, Berkane avenged their loss to another Egyptian side, Zamalek, in last year’s final which they lost on penalties.
The club from north-eastern Morocco also gave their nation a much-needed boost after Egyptian duo Al Ahly and Zamalek gained the upper hand against both Wydad and Raja Casablanca in recent Champions League semi-finals.
Berkane started their campaign with defeat to Ghana’s Ashanti Gold but lost only once again, in the group stages, as a team that finished third in the recently-concluded Moroccan league proved its mettle.
Founded in 1938, Berkane have now won the only two trophies in their history in the last two years – their joyous scenes of celebrations meaning they had added the Confederation Cup to their 2018 Moroccan cup success.
Moroccan Defender, Mohamed Abarhoun, Dies Of Stomach Cancer
Mohamed Abarhoun, Moroccan professional footballer, is dead.
Abarhoun, who played as a defender, died from stomach cancer aged 31.
Abarhoun’s former club Caykur Rizespor has confirmed that the seven-cap Morocco international passed away on Tuesday after being diagnosed with stomach cancer earlier this year.
In a statement the club said: “We have learned with sadness the news of the death of our former football player Mohamed Abarhoun, who has been receiving treatment for a while.
“We wish Allah’s mercy to Mohamed Abarhoun, who passed away, and our condolences to his family, relatives and community.”
Abarhoun spent seven years playing in Morocco for Moghreb Tetouan, where he won two league titles, before moving to Portuguese side Moreirense, who he left last year to join Rizespor.
At international level, the defender helped Morocco’s under-23 side qualify for the 2012 Olympics and went onto play twice at the Games in London.
He also played for Morocco at the 2014 African Nations Championship, the tournament for locally-based players, in South Africa as well as two friendlies.
Botswana Completes Renovation Of Athletes Village
The Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC) says it has spent 4.1 million Pula (around $375,000) to refurbish its athletes’ facility.
The facility has 16 units, which contained eight two-bedroom apartments and eight one-bedroom apartments all with a lounge, kitchen and bathroom.
Speaking during the handing over ceremony of the facility on Tuesday in Gaborone, Tumiso Rakgare, Minister of Youth Empowerment, Sport and Culture Development, said the facility was acquired in 2007 for purposes of athletes lodging, while in camp.
“This was done as a long-term strategy to cut costs as athletes had to be booked in hotels during national team camps.’’
Over the years, the facility had been serving its purpose, though maintenance and upkeep had been lacking due to constant usage by the athletes, added Rakgare.
Rakgare further said the ministry made it a priority to make funds available to assist in refurbishing the facility to improve its aesthetic appeal.
He also advised the commission to use the facility, to generate revenue when athletes are not in camp.
SPORTS NEWS IN 60 | 1 – 12 – 2020
Newscentral’s Joe Hanson bringing you headlines of the latest sports stories from Africa today.
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