Champions League final to return to two-leg format: CAF president

Ahram Online , Sunday 26 Jun 2022

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) President Patrice Motsepe said that both the Champions League and Confederation Cup finals will return to the two-leg format instead of the one-leg format applied in the last three editions.

President Patrice Motsepe


“We are going to fix that. This will never happen again,” Motsepe was quoted as saying by South African media on Sunday.

“It is something I inherited and I could not change. The decision was taken before me. We will have a two-legged final because again, can you imagine the supporters of Ahly in Egypt and of course my favourite coach Pitso [Mosimane and former Ahly coach]?” the South African Motsepe added.

Sympathy with Ahly

On 30 May, Egyptian giants Ahly lost the CL final to Moroccan champions Wydad at Mohamed V Stadium in Casablanca, following debate over the final’s location.

Ahly, who were chasing a record-extending 11th triumph, failed in their attempts to have the game moved to a “neutral venue” after the CAF said that Morocco was the only bidder.

Patrice Motsepe expressed sympathy with the Reds’ position, but added “there are many countries who want to compete for hosting CAF events but you cannot compete without the government support.”

“At the end of the day you have two countries, Morocco and Senegal who had complied with the conditions (of being hosts for the Champions League final, but CAF said Senegal pulled out in the end).

“I privately recognised that you cannot be a president of the organisation and not comply with the rules and regulations. So I am complying with legality.

“But let me tell you, the concern from Ahly that they were being disadvantaged (by playing Wydad in Morocco), is a legitimate and a fair concern. The only problem I had was I cannot be a president that disregards and ignores rules and regulations and decisions that were taken,” he concluded.

The CAF president also refuted the claims that the African football governing body was favoring Morocco in hosting the CL final, vowing that justice would prevail as long as he stays in his positions.

“Is everything going to Morocco? Let me tell you something: while I am president of CAF no country, no club or nation is going to enjoy preferred status,” he concluded.

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