The Atlas Lions thrilled the football world during the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. Their historic achievement made Moroccans dream and united them around common values of sharing, joy and passion. Between Morocco and football, a story of love and challenges. A story that reminds us that nothing is impossible: You should dream big.
Morocco, Kingdom of Light, has always shone in the world’s greatest sporting events. Thanks to the vision of the Kingdom, the efforts of the Royal Moroccan Football Federation, and the passion of the people, Moroccan football has always reserved for aficionados of the round ball moments of pure happiness, breath-taking moments.
Morocco has always been a source of inspiration for African football. A retrospective of their exploits:
In 1976, the Atlas Lions won the African Cup of Nations in Ethiopia.
In 1986, Morocco became the first African country to pass the first round of a World Cup, only to be eliminated by the German Mannschaft.
Morocco and its national clubs continued to make history. In 2013, Marrakech hosted another feat: the final of the Club World Cup between Raja of Casablanca and Bayern of Munich. A breath-taking match in which the Rajaouis outdid themselves and made history as the first African team to reach the final of this competition by beating prestigious clubs such as the Brazilian Atletico Mineiro.
In 2022, the Moroccan national team rewrote history, opening a new chapter for Arab and African football. Led by coach Walid Regragui, it was the first African nation to reach the semi-finals of the World Cup and to be part of the “Final Four” of this great sporting event.
Moroccan clubs have the most successful track record on the continent. Wydad Athletic Club (WAC) has won several titles: The African Champions Cup (1992, 2017, 2022) and the African Super Cup (2018). As African Champions, WAC played in the second round of the 2023 Club World Cup, organised in Morocco, but lost to Al-Hilal Saudi on penalties.
The success of Raja Club Athletic (RCA) is echoing throughout Africa. The Green Eagles have won several titles: The African Super Cup (2000), the African Champions Cup (1989, 1997, 1999) and the Arab Champions League (2006).
These achievements are the result of long-term work, led by the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF), which has invested in infrastructure, equipment and training centres, real nurseries of champions, heroes capable of meeting challenges and making the Moroccan people dream.
The Raja de Casablanca football academy is finally born. This modern-looking structure will allow the historic club to reconnect with its vocation as a supplier of talent.
The goal of the Academy is to provide better intellectual, sporting and educational conditions in the field of football. The club’s policy aims to extend and share its know-how and skills with African brothers through the training of coaches and the creation of tournaments so that everyone can benefit from them.
The Raja Club Athletic Casablanca academy is a majestic setting. One is immediately struck by the beauty of the buildings which house dormitories, administrative offices, sports halls, meeting rooms. Located on the outskirts of Casablanca, the jewel covers an area of 7 hectares. The academy also has two large football pitches, four futsal pitches, besides a rehabilitation hall, a medical center and other administrative facilities.
A lot of thought went into this Raja Casablanca Academy. The land was offered by King Mohammed VI. The combined cost of the development is 1.8 million dollars. It's impressive that it is less than 2 million dollars#DestinationMorocco2025 pic.twitter.com/hRXUuFgOOW
— Juliet Bawuah (@julietbawuah) February 11, 2023
The Raja Club Athletic Casablanca academy is a donation offered to the club by the Kingdom, to reward their brilliant career in the 2013 Club World Cup marked by qualification for the final.
For his part, Aziz El Badraoui, president of Raja Casablanca, expressed the pride of the club to have this academy which will constitute a nursery for the talents of the round ball, noting that this structure is part of the efforts and major achievements of the Federation.
The construction of this reference training center cost 8 million Dirhams (approximately 492-million FCFA). The academy is open to four categories of young people: U15, U17, U19 and U21.
WEEKEND WAHALA 🤯💭
Morocco FA helps Raja Casablanca to construct world class academy with only $1.1 million
Our football people can’t even boast this for the national teams, let alone help a club
Help me understand why the gap btn serious and unserious is widening#Betwinner pic.twitter.com/KDOI1rlSDa
— Thierry Nyann 🇬🇭 (@nyannthierry) February 11, 2023
The academy only hosts young people spread over 4 categories, in 45 double rooms spread over 4 buildings, A, B, C and D. Building A is dedicated to players of the first team, while the buildings B, C and D are dedicated to cadets, juniors and hopefuls. There are also ten single rooms for technical and medical staff.
It is also on these facilities that the first team of Raja Club Athletic de Casablanca now trains. “It is important that there is a closeness between the first team and our young people”, indicates Hamza Sairi, Director of the academy. The workforce of the Raja Club Athletic academy has a total of 384 young people divided into different teams both regional and national. The football school, which remains housed in its former Base Camp in Oasis, has 600 young people registered.
With this new gem, the Raja Academy has the means to optimize the quality of training and produce more talent. “The main objective is to feed our first team from year to year”, explains the academy director of Raja. Players who do not have the opportunity to join the professional team will be able to seek their fortune elsewhere, in other Moroccan clubs or abroad. The club also places great emphasis on the education of its residents. “A contract is signed with high schools for the education of young people. From next year, classes will be held here to facilitate logistics. We want our young people to have at least a bachelor’s degree. Because we provide support in professional training for those who will not succeed in football, “says Hamza Sairi.
The other categories such as the youth of the regional championship (children aged 6 to 13) and the club’s women’s team continue to train at the Oasis center, the team’s former base camp in waiting for the extension of the new academy which is about to welcome new play areas and new dormitories.
The upkeep and maintenance of the facilities of this academy, is provided by the Royal Moroccan Football Federation (FRMF).
Raja Casablanca is the most successful Moroccan club internationally, notably with three CAF Champions Leagues and two CAF Cups. The club created in 1949 has always distinguished itself in training, notably placing several products with the Atlas Lions. The center is also open to young people from other African countries.
Morocco has a good chance of obtaining the organization of the 2025 edition thanks to its stadiums and other infrastructures meeting international standards and requirements, as well as its experience in organizing high-level competitions.
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