Moroccan giants Raja Casablanca placed one hand on the Caf Confederation Cup title after earning a resounding 3-0 win over AS Vita club on Sunday night.
Raja Casablanca attacker Soufiane Rahimi was undoubtedly the hero on the night as he put on a showing that saw him score twice for the home side in front of a packed house.
After a rather uneventful first half involving the two sides, the clash was brought to life as Rahimi struck just after the half-time interval to give Raja Casablanca the lead.
The 22-year-old showed maturity and striker’s instinct as he fired his side ahead after latching onto a Mahmoud Benhalib back-heel.
Rahimi was certainly looking to etch his name into Raja Casablanca’s history books with an impressive performance, and just after the hour mark, he had his side's fans jumping up yet again in excitement as he found the back of the net, this time from outside the area.
While Raja Casablanca were looking good for the win, Vita Club’s woes were further compounded as they were not only forced down to 10-men following the sending off of Yannick Bangala Litombo, but gave away a penalty.
The defender picked up his second booking on the night in the 64th minute, making Vita Club’s task even more difficult as Benhalib stepped up and made no mistake from the spot, to make it 3-0 to the former African champions.
However, despite the home side's numerical advantage, they were unable to add to their tally as the Congolese giants fought tooth and nail looking for a way back into the tie.
But it was not to be as Raja Casablanca held on for a famous win, and the after-game celebrations on the field and in the stands were certainly an indication of who the favourites for the tie are.
Meanwhile, Vita Club will hope that all is not lost as they head into the second leg, to be held in Kinshasa on December 2. But it will take a monumental effort, if Florent Ibenge’s men are to rescue their hopes and dreams.