A VAR that does not work in the biggest scandal of the Champions of Africa

The second leg of the African Champions League final allowed Tunisia’s Esperance title to be revalidated, although their victory against Wydad will always remain controversial (1-0). The match was suspended for more than an hour due to the protest of the Moroccan team, which had demanded the revision of a goal in the VAR. This verification could never be carried out, since the video arbitration system did not work.

It was the 60th minute, with 1-0 on the scoreboard, when the referee canceled Walid El Karti’s goal for the offside visitors. The Wydad players demanded the assistance of the VAR, although nothing could be achieved, since the system was out of service.

The team led by Faouzi Benzarti, already very upset by the refereeing of the first leg, decided to leave the grass of Stade Olympique de Radès, packed with more than 60,000 fans. At that moment numerous altercations broke out, with the launching of bottles of water and the intervention of the forces of order.

Meanwhile, on the grass, several executives of the African Confederation (CAF) were trying to offer explanations to prominent members of the two finalist clubs. After almost 90 minutes of break, Bakary Papa Gassama, the experienced referee of the final, decreed the end of the game from midfield.

In this way, thanks to the goal of Mohamed Youcef Belaili shortly before the break, the Esperance adds his fourth Champions, after the conquered in 1994, 2011 and 2018.

After the first-leg clash, resolved with 1-1 in Rabat, Egyptian referee Gehad Grisha was suspended for six months by CAF for his “poor performance”. Egypt is also the host of the Africa Cup of Nations, which takes place between June 21 and July 19.