Raja Casablanca Smash V Club in Caf Final First Leg

Raja Casablanca of Morocco scored three goals in 19 minutes to take a 3-0 lead over V Club of the Democratic Republic of Congo in the first leg of the Caf Confederation Cup final Sunday.

Raja were back to their predatory best after failing to score more than twice in the two-leg quarterfinals or semifinals – where they took the scalp of Nigerian giants Enyimba.

Soufiane Rahimi broke the deadlock on 47 minutes at a packed 65 000-capacity Stade Mohammed V, and netted again just past the hour mark to put the hosts in driver’s seat.

Leading Confederation Cup scorer Mahmoud Benhalib lifted his season total to 12 goals by converting a 66th-minute penalty that saw Yannick Bangala sent off for his second yellow card offence.

Raja have won the Champions League three times and the Super Cup and now defunct CAF Cup once each, but their last African success was 15 years ago.

Spain-born Raja handler and former Villarreal coach, Juan Carlos Garrido is hoping to become the first coach to win the Confederation Cup with two clubs after guiding Al Ahly of Egypt to the 2014 title.

V Club, who forced a 0-0 draw away to Raja last May in the group stage, must now succeed where the six other CAF opponents of Raja this year failed and put three goals past Anas Zniti to have any hope of overturning the deficit.

Their task is however made much harder after an early injury to star striker Jean-Marc Makusu Mundele on Sunday.


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