Magic Hafidi helps Raja snatch title in final minute

Hafidi, popularly known as 'Moroccan Messi', snatches title for Raja Casablanca thanks to his two goals against FAR Rabat.

JOHANNESBURG - Magic Abdelilah Hafidi, popularly known as the 'Moroccan Messi' was the two-goal star as Raja Casablanca dramatically won the national championship for the first time in seven years.

His second goal against FAR Rabat in the final minute of regulation time gave the Green Eagles a 2-1 win and top place on 60 points, one more than arch rivals Wydad Casablanca.

Raja and Wydad qualify for the 2020/2021 CAF Champions League while third-place Renaissance Berkane enter the CAF Confederation Cup, the African equivalent of the Europa League.

Needing maximum points to be certain of finishing first, Raja fell behind after 42 minutes at home to FAR when Ivorian Joseph Konadu Guede scored.

Hafidi equalised just past the hour and then snatched the dramatic winner, with both goals being created by captain Mohsine Moutaouali.

It was the 12th time Raja have been crowned champions, making them the equal second most successful club with FAR behind 20-time winners Wydad.

Wydad trailed before winning 2-1 at FUS Rabat thanks to a late Zouheir el Moutaraji goal while a Mouhssine Iajour penalty earned Berkane a 1-0 victory at Olympique Safi.

Moroccan security forces locked Ain Diab district, where Casablanca’s football fans usually celebrate their teams’ victories, as part of stringent measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus outbreak.

But Raja fans were oblivious of the measures and the night curfew. They celebrated their team’s championship in the popular district of Derb Sultan which had seen huge gatherings and fireworks despite the police’s repeated efforts to scatter them.