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Arab Club Champions Cup

Arab Club Championship 2017: Tunisia's Esperance crowned Arab Champions

22:59 SAST 2017/08/06
Esperance Al-Faisaly ACC 2017
The thrilling final, marred by furious protests, was won in extra time by a controversial goal that made the winners richer by USD 2.5 million

Chamseddine Daoudi's 101st minute strike proved to be winner as Esperance Sportive de Tunis edged Al-Faisaly 3-2 in the Arab Club Championship (ACC) 2017 final at the Alexandria Stadium, Egypt, on Sunday.

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A second half brace by Saad Bguir (47' and 54') had initially given the Tunisian giants the lead before Al-Faisaly restored parity through Akram Zuway (71') and Khalil Baniateyah (87') in a game marred by ugly scenes as the Jordanian outfit attacked referee Ibrahim Nour El-Din.

Surprisingly, no red cards were flashed by the Egyptian official who was challenged after he allowed what turned out to be the winner in the first half of extra time.

The opener scored by Esperance came two minutes into the second half when Bguir's low strike from the edge of the box found the back of the net. Then in the 54th minute, the same player extended his side's lead through a direct free-kick that left rival goalkeeper Moataz Yaseen rooted to the spot.

Al-Faisaly replied by pulling back a goal in the 71st minute through Zuway, before Baniateyah nodded in the late equaliser to force the game into extra time.

Tensions splurged on the ground after the 101st minute winner was allowed by referee Nour El-Din wherein Franck Kom appeared to be in an off-side position before setting up Daoudi to tap the ball into an empty net. Huge protests by Al-Faisaly players and officials followed. However, no red cards were issued.

With this victory, Esperance has won the ACC for the second time and it's now the sixth time that the championship has been claimed by a Tunisian team.