Renaissance Sportive de Berkane (Arabic: نادي النهضة البركانية) commonly referred to as Nahdat Berkane or RS Berkane for short, is a Moroccan professional football club based in Berkane, that competes in Botola, the top flight of Moroccan football.

RS Berkane
Full nameRenaissance Sportive de Berkane
النهضة الرياضية البركانية
Nickname(s)The Oranges Boys
Founded1938; 86 years ago (1938)
GroundBerkane Municipal Stadium
Berkane, Morocco
Capacity10,000
ChairmanHakim Benabdallah
CoachMouin Chaâbani
LeagueBotola
2022–234th
WebsiteClub website

Founded on 1938, the club has traditionally worn an orange home kit since inception. RS Berkane[1] is a well known club for the success of its football section, very popular in and outside the country. Berkane established itself as a major force in both Moroccan and African football.[2]

In domestic football, the club has won 3 trophies; 3 Moroccan Throne Cup. In international competitions, Berkane have won 3 trophies; two CAF Confederation Cup titles and one CAF Super Cup title. Berkane is also, one of the most successful Moroccan club of the 21st century, and is the 3rd most crowned Moroccan club in Africa with 3 titles in official competitions.

History edit

Founding and early years edit

The club was founded in 1938 under the name of Association Sportive de Berkane.[3] In 1953, a team driven by nationalism, was created. It was called Union Sportive Musulmane de Berkane (USMB).[4][5] But this did not last, after a crisis that broke out in 1955.[6]

In 1959–1960, the Union Sportive Musulmane de Berkane was relegated to the 3rd division. In 1962–1963, it contested the play-off match to move up to the 2nd division. The first meeting was between Union Sportive Musulmane de Berkane, against Wydad de Fès. Berkane was promoted to the top division.

In 1966 it was renamed Union Sportive de Berkane and in the same year, a new club was founded under the name of Chabab Riadhi de Berkane.

In 1971, both teams merged to make Renaissance Sportive de Berkane (Nahdat Berkane). This merger was beneficial for the club, it entered the 1st division in 1977–78.

In 1986, Berkane reached the final for the first time in their history after defeating MC Oujda 2–1 in the semi-final. On 7 September 1987, Berkane lost the 1986 Throne Cup final, after a 4–0 defeat by Kawkab Marrakech.[7]

 
Berkane in 2007

Return to the Botola edit

The RSB regained its spot in the first moroccan division in 2012, under the presidency of Fouzi Lekjaa, who ran the club since 2009.[8][9]

In 2014, Berkane reached the final for the second time, after a 2–0 victory against Maghreb de Fès. On 18 November, Berkane lost the final after a 2–0 loss against FUS Rabat.[10]

Fouzi Lekjaa era (2018–present) edit

In 2018, RS Berkane won its first ever title, the Moroccan Throne Cup after defeating Wydad de Fès In penalties.[11]

Berkane have been making steady progress over the years, culminating with their first continental silverware. After their Confederation Cup campaign ended at the quarter-final stage in 2018, they went further in 2019 and lost the final to Zamalek SC.[12][13] In the semi-final, Berkane defeated CS Sfaxien 3–2 on aggregate, reaching the final of the CAF Confederation Cup for the first time.[14][15]

In 2020, Renaissance Sportive De Berkane was crowned Confederation Cup champions, clinching their first continental title in their history.[16][17] The club beat Egyptians Pyramids 1–0 in the final game at Moulay Abdallah Stadium in Rabat.[18] In the semi-final, Berkane defeated countrymates Hassania Agadir 2–1both scored by Mohamed Aziz.[19][20]

In the 2022 CAF Confederation Cup, Berkane qualified to the knockout stages after finishing top in the group stages winning three matches, drawing one and losing two.[21] They defeated Al Masry in the Quarter-finals after an away goal ruled in their favor.[22] In the Semi-final, they faced TP Mazembe, which ended in a 4–2 victory on aggregate.[23][24] On 20 May 2022, Berkane defeated Orlando Pirates F.C. on penalties to win their second african title.[25][26] With this win, Berkane will play in the first-ever all-Moroccan CAF Super Cup against 2021–22 CAF Champions League winners, Wydad AC.[27][28] On 28 July 2022, Berkane defeated Wydad in penalties in the 2020–21 Moroccan Throne Cup to win its second domestic title.[29][30]

On 11 September 2022, Berkane defeated Wydad 2–0 to win its first ever CAF Super Cup.[31][32] They failed to qualify for the 2023 CAF Confederation Cup.[33][34] However, following a poor start to the season, Abdelhak Benchikha was sacked in November 2022 after three months officially in charge, with Berkane in 13th place in the table.[35]

On 12 September 2023, Berkane announced the club will contribute MAD 500 thousand to the "Al Haouz Earthquake".[36]

Grounds edit

The Stade Municipal de Berkane, located in the city of Berkane in the Eastern Rif of Morocco, has been the home stadium for the team since 2014. With a seating capacity of 10,000 spectators, the stadium underwent significant improvements in 2017 when a natural lawn replaced the synthetic turf that was initially installed.[37] Notably, the stadium gained recognition when it hosted the first leg of the CAF Confederation Cup between RS Berkane and Zamalek SC[38] on 19 May 2019. Today, the venue is not only used for local matches, including the Botola Pro but also for international games, such as the CAF Confederation Cup.

Apart from its impressive seating area, the stadium features several essential facilities, including a foyer, a hall of honor, a doping control room, a nursing room, two clothes warehouses, sanitary facilities, and a meeting room for referees. Moreover, the playing field is covered with artificial grass that incorporates natural fibers, ensuring an optimal playing surface for the athletes. With its modern amenities and rich sporting history, the Stade Municipal de Berkane continues to serve as a symbol of pride for both the local community and fans of the beautiful game.[39]

Performance in CAF competitions edit

Honours edit

Type Competition Titles Winning Seasons Runners-up
Domestic Moroccan Throne Cup[40] 3 2018, 2021, 2022 1987, 2014
Continental CAF Confederation Cup[41] 2 2020, 2022 2019
CAF Super Cup[42] 1 2022 2021

Doubles and Trebles edit

Current squad edit

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
2 DF   MAR Mohamed Bentarcha
3 FW   MAR Brahim El Bahraoui
4 DF   BFA Issoufou Dayo (captain)
5 MF   MAR Mohamed Farhan
6 MF   SEN Mamadou Lamine Camara
7 FW   MAR Youssef El Fahli
11 FW   MAR Youssef Zghoudi
12 GK   MAR Hamza Akbi
15 MF   MAR Hamza Regragui
17 MF   MAR Yassine Labhiri
19 DF   MAR Hamza El Moussaoui
No. Pos. Nation Player
20 MF   MAR Mehdi Oubila
21 MF   MAR Bakr El Helali
22 GK   MAR Amine El Ouaad
23 MF   MTN Adama Ba
26 FW   MAR Abdelouahed Hasty
27 MF   MAR Ayoub Khairi
29 DF   MAR Hamza Semmoumy
30 FW   MAR Younes Naiym
33 DF   MAR Abdelkrim Baadi
35 MF   MAR Reda Hajji
40 DF   MAR Oussama Bourouba
DF   MAR Abdelilah Madkour
MF   MAR Omar Arjoune
MF   SEN Paul Valère Bassène
FW   BFA Djibril Ouattara

Managers edit

References edit

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External links edit