Al Ahly Kings Of Africa for the 9th Time | CAFCL | VIDEO

Al Ahly Kings Of Africa for the 9th Time | CAFCL

Ahly finally grasped an elusive African Champions League trophy after a late screamer from playmaker Magdi Afsha gave them a 2-1 victory over Cairo rivals Zamalek in a thrilling derby on Friday.

Afsha’s unstoppable volley with four minutes remaining, after he stole ahead of Moroccan forward Achraf Bencharki, settled a nerve-jangling tie that was dubbed the “derby of the century” by local media.

It was a fitting end to an exciting affair that lived up to its billing, with both sides exchanging punches in an end-to-end game before Ahly proved the more clinical with the decisive winner.

Ahly midfielder Amr El-Sulaya headed home from a corner as early as the fifth minute but veteran winger Mahmoud Shikabala, who made a rare start after replacing the coronavirus-hit Youssef Ibrahim, leveled the score after a sublime solo effort on 31 minutes.

The Red Devils secured a record-extending ninth Champions League title and their first since 2013, atoning for two final losses against Morocco’s Wydad and Tunisia’s Esperance in 2017 and 2018 respectively.

They are on course for a treble of titles, having already won the Egyptian Premier League title and reached the Egypt Cup semis.

For Zamalek, who last put their hands on the Champions League trophy in 2002, it was a bitter end to a season in which they have not been able to clinch a major title despite boasting a star-studded squad, only winning the Egyptian and African Super Cups. They are still in the Egypt Cup last four though.

Ahly will now represent Africa at the Club World Cup next year as they will make a sixth appearance — a record in the continent.

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