Morocco won the African Nations Championship (CHAN) for the second time by overcoming Mali’s bold challenge 2-0 in a thrilling final at Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium in Yaounde, Cameroon on Sunday night.
Two second-half headers by Abdelmouna Boutouil and captain Ayoub El Kaabi sealed the victory for the Atlas Lions in the tournament in Cameroon to hand them the title.
The Atlas Lions repeated the success on home soil three years ago by a margin that hardly looked possible as the Eagles stood toe-to-toe with the favourites for over an hour.
Houcine Ammouta’s side became the first country to win a second successive title in the tournament designed exclusively for home-based players.
Mali also felt their luck deserted them, but ultimately Morocco ran out victorious to revive the memories of the 4-0 victory over Nigeria in the CHAN 2018 final in Casablanca.
Morocco star midfielder Soufiane Rahimi swept the top awards at the championship after winning the best player and top scorers awards.
The 24-year-old, who plays for Raja Casablanca, was handed the award on Sunday night at the Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium in Yaounde after inspiring his side to win the tournament.
Rahimi was the star player of the tournament thanks to his goal scoring prowess from his midfield position and impressive contribution to his team.
He received the top scorer award from the legendary Cameroon striker Samuel Eto’o after helping his side win the tournament.
He topped the scoring charts in the competition with five goals and also received three Man of the Match awards during the three-week tournament held in the Central African country.
He scored two goals in Morocco’s 5-2 victory over Uganda, netted the first goal in the Atlas Lions 3-1 win in the quarter-finals before scoring another brace against Cameroon in their 4-0 semi-final victory.