Fan death, crowd trouble mar CAF Champions League games in Morocco, Algeria
Casablanca authorities have opened an investigation after a fan died outside the gates of the Stade Mohammed V before Raja's match against Al-Ahly in the CAF Champions League quarter-finals on Saturday.
Moroccan media reported that the fan, a 29-year-old woman, died in the crush as thousands of fans tried to get into the ground to watch Raja try and overturn a 2-0 deficit from the first leg in Egypt.
"Aziz el-Badraoui, President of Raja Club Athletic, in his name and on behalf of all members of the club, extends his deepest condolences to the family of the fan, Noura, who passed away before our team's match against Al-Ahly," the Moroccan club said in a statement.
وفاة مشجعة تبلغ من العمر 29 سنة، بمحيط المركب الرياضي محمد الخامس، على هامش مقابلة الرجاء و الأهلي. وقد تم فتح بحث من قبل المصالح المعنية تحت إشراف النيابة العامة المختصة، للكشف عن ظروف وملابسات الوفاة. pic.twitter.com/ZmlNfr5fWV— 2M.ma (@2MInteractive) April 29, 2023
Another CAF Champions League quarter-final between Esperance and Algeria's JS Kabylie in Tunis on Saturday was marred by crowd trouble, which caused a 40-minute delay to the second half.
Esperance fans clashed with Tunisian security forces and lit fireworks on the terraces at halftime of the tie at Rades Stadium. Firefighters had to be called out to extinguish several small fires in front of the stands.
Algerian fans also complained that they had been subjected to unjustified attacks by security forces.
The match ended in a 1-1, draw but Esperance progressed to the semi-finals 2-1 aggregate after a 1-0 victory in the first leg.
They will face Al-Ahly over two legs for a place in the final after the Cairo club held Raja to a 0-0 draw in Casablanca.
Raja's city rivals Wydad, the reigning champions, will face South Africa's Mamelodi Sundowns in the other semi-final next month.