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Raja on course for CAF Cup semi-finals despite Pirates draw

Raja Casablanca


A six-match CAF Confederation Cup winning streak by Raja Casablanca ended on Sunday, but they remain on course for the semi-finals after forcing a 1-1 draw with Orlando Pirates in Soweto.

Vincent Pule rounded goalkeeper Anas Zniti to give the South Africans a 39th-minute lead in the quarter-final first leg at an empty Orlando Stadium because of the coronavirus pandemic.

It was the first goal conceded by seven-time CAF title winners Raja in seven matches after clean sheets in every group game in the African equivalent of the UEFA Europa League.

Raja levelled on 60 minutes when Democratic Republic of Congo-born Ben Malango latched on a long pass and fired past goalkeeper Wayne Sandilands.

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A goalless draw in Casablanca next Sunday will suffice to take Raja through to the penultimate stage while Pirates must score for the first time in four away matches to have a chance of survival.

Raja won the Confederation Cup in 2018 while Pirates came closest to lifting the trophy three years earlier by reaching the final only to lose against Etoile Sahel of Tunisia.


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