R S. Berkane of Morocco emerge newly crowned kings of CAF Confederations cup
By Abdulgafar Oladimeji
Rennaisance Sportive Berkane of Morocco, Saturday night at Godswill Akpabio international stadium, in Uyo, beat Orlando Pirates of South Africa 5-4 on penalties to emerge as the new reigning TotalEnergies CAF Confederations cup.
The winner in the battle of Uyo was decided via penalties .
RSB converted five spot kicks against four by their south African foes.
Earlier, Yousef Alfahli almost stole the show, when he converted a penalty kick , when he sent Richard Ofori in goal for Orlando Pirates to the wrong direction to calmly slot home from the spot to seal the day for the highly technical north African side.
The southern African desperately in search of an equalizer introduced three fresh legs, who increased the raids by Pirates in the bid to redeem the stretched night of play , from the stingy Moroccan defence lines.
The resilient South African lads broke the deadlock, when they succeeded in neutralizing the Moroccan defence to bring the game to 1-1, late into the second half of extra time of play.
Earlier, in the first half Orlando Pirates of South Africa , failed to convert its early chances to establish an early lead against R S Berkane of Morrocco .
When Kebelo Dlamin failed to convert a one on one situation settling for a weak finish into the waiting hands of Hamza Hamiani in goal for the Moroccans.
Pirates throughout the duration of play had enjoyed massive support from the home crowd, who could not hide their bias for former Akwa United captain, Olisah Ndah, who is on parade on the night for the South Africans.
Both sides launched dangerous offensives and counter offensives, which were all fluff at the last strike
Pirates in the 43rd minutes launched a dangerous incursion that was deleted by the last lines of their Moroccan foes.
R S .B in the 45th initiated a last minute desperate moves in attempt to steal the first half of the night, but had their well knitted advancement halted by the well coordinated defence lines of the Pirates.
The title contenders of the night in Uyo resumed the second stanza with dangerous attacks to express their intention to cart home the title, which failed to yield dividends.
The South Africans swerved tactics, by introducing Tshegofatso Francis Mabasa in for Sakhile Francis.
The north African responded with double substitutions, introducing Hamza Regragui and Mohammed Aziz for Elmehdi Oubilla and Cherki Baihri .
Both sides made dangerous incursions in the last five minutes of play. They threw caution to the winds in search of victory, looking dangerous in play to the delight of appreciable Uyo fans in attendance .
At regulation time the keenly contested final ended goal drought, Centre referee Sikhazi from Zambia made the call for an extra time of play.
Orlando Pirates approached to recharge the first half in the extra time by introducing, Thabang Monare in for Ben Motshwari .
Midway into extra time, Virtual Assistance Referee , VAR spotted an infringement that resulted in a penalty kick in favour of the northerners. Which was converted by Yousef
The Moroccans employed all manner of tactics to hold onto their slim goal edge to carry the day , which crumbled leading to penalties.