Picture : USM Alger the winner !

USM Alger win CAF CC title in their first continental win.    

The Algerian side glided past  0-1 victors Young Africans of Tanzania to make it on the away goals rule. The home defeat in front of an overwhelming capacity crowd at Algier’s Stade du 5 Juillet 1962 did little to quiet outright celebrations by  fans following the premier Algerian victory of the title. It took football wisdom and mettle to overpower a particularly spirited  Young Africans side who fell short of making capital of their  away 2-1 first leg win in Dar es Salaam last Sunday.

The hosts lost a second half penalty when  captain Zineddine Belaid’s shot was stopped by keeper Djigui Diarra, a task the visitors had earlier accomplished through Djuma Shabani. Imagination, verve and purpose were clearly to the credit of the Tanzanians also called Yanga but they fell short of the defensive resilience of the hosts. At full time, the verdict was a Tanzanian capitulation on the basis of the away goals rule to the advantage of the Algerians.

The first TotalEnergies CAF Confederation Cup final was played in 2004 after the CAF Cup and CAF Winners Cup competitions were merged. Hearts of Oak of Ghana pioneered victory over RS Berkane of Morocco. CS Sfaxien of Tunisia have won the trophy three times while each of Etoile Sahel(Tunisia), TP Mazembe(DR Congo), RS Berkane(Morocco) and Raja CA(Morocco) did so twice each. The final games were played this year over two legs for the 17th time after the one-legged final experiences  of 2019-20, 2020-21 and 2021-22 on neutral grounds.