A 1-0 home win over Egyptian giants Al Ahly was enough to hand Wydad Athletic Club Casablanca of Morocco their second Caf Champions League trophy on Saturday.
The 1-0 win gave the Moroccan side a 2-1 aggregate triumph over the competition’s most successful club after the first leg ended 1-1 in Cairo.
El Karti’s second-half header was enough to settle the tie in Wydad’s favour in front of a raucous home crowd after both sides missed big chances before the interval.
The visitors, chasing a ninth crown, pushed hard for a late equaliser but fell short and could only watch on as Wydad celebrated their first title in 25 years on the pitch at full-time.
The two teams headed into the break still goalless, a scoreline that would already see the hosts clinch the trophy.
El Haddad blasted wide immediately following the restart but, after a stoppage to allow flare-induced smoke to clear the pitch, the contest slowed until El Karti made his mark with 21 minutes remaining.
Achraf Bencharki – who scored Wydad’s goal in Egypt – provided the cross from the right for the 23-year-old midfielder to nip in ahead of a clutch of defenders and nod into the net.
Ekramy somehow denied El Haddad the second from another Bencharki centre, but the Moroccan side held on with the backing of their determined home support to take the trophy.
The Moroccan club has in its books Nigeria’s Chisom Chikakara, who moved to the North African team earlier in the year from Nigerian Professional Football League side Abia Warriors.