Raja vs Wydad: Inside the Casablanca derby - one of the fiercest rivalries in football

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Raja Wydad Casablanca Morocco
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Everything you need to know about the Casablanca derby and visiting the Moroccan city

Casablanca is one of the most vibrant cities in north Africa and it served as the inspiration for the 1942 classic movie of the same name, starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman.

It is also a Soccer City, with one of the fiercest rivalries in world football taking place there each year.

When Raja Club Athletic and Wydad Athletic Club lock horns in the heart of Casablanca, sparks inevitably fly and the incredible atmosphere has ensured that the game has become an attraction of its own.

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Here, GOAL takes a look at the derby, as well as some key information about visiting Casablanca.

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What is the Casablanca derby?

The Casablanca derby is a football rivalry contested by Raja and Wydad. It is the main rivalry in the city of Casablanca and one of the biggest derbies in African football, with enmities dating back to the 1950s.

Games are renowned for their often febrile atmospheres, with supporters allowing themselves to be swept up in the occasion, when cacophonous chanting and towering tifos engulf the stadium.

Raja, founded by union workers, is known as 'The People's Club' in Casablanca, while Wydad, thanks to its long history of success and the fact that supporters are drawn from all over Morocco, is sometimes perceived as a darling of the establishment.

While Wydad are the older of the two clubs and more successful historically, Raja have the upper hand when it comes to head-to-head meetings.

Who has won more trophies - Raja or Wydad?

As of June 2023, Wydad had won more trophies overall than Raja, with 48 pieces of silverware to 32.

Throne Cup89
Moroccan Elite Cup04
CAF Champions League33
CAF Confederation Cup20
CAF Super Cup21
African Cup Winners' Cup01
CAF Cup10
Arab Club Champions Cup21
Arab Super Cup01
North African Championship03
North African Cup01
UNAF Club Cup10
Afro-Asian Club Championship11
Mohammed V Cup01

Wydad are the more successful team from a domestic perspective, having won the Botola (top Moroccan league) 22 times to Raja's 12, though the latter has only really become a force on that front since the 1990s.

Indeed, half of Raja's league crowns came in the 1990s when they won six-in-a-row, a feat not matched by any other team.

On the continental stage they have each won three CAF Champions Leagues and they are similarly level on other regional competitions, though Raja edge it.

Where is the Casablanca derby played?

Stade Mohammed V Casablanca Morocco general view

Stade Mohammed V is the shared home of Raja and Wydad, so it is where the majority of Casablanca derby games are played.

While it has an official seating capacity of 47,000, the ground has hosted over 100,000 spectators at games - including the derby.

It is named in honour of King Mohammed V, who was Sultan of Morocco from 1927 until 1953 and again from 1955 until 1957. He was subsequently declared king in 1957 and his reign lasted until 1961.

Located on the Rue Ali Abderrazak in central Casablanca, the ground is a multi-sport venue and has even hosted a number of Morocco senior international matches, including the 2004 friendly with Argentina.

It is a regular host of major games, including the CAF Champions League final and CAF Super Cup.

Where to stay in Casablanca

Casblanca has plenty of options when it comes to places to stay for visitors to the city.

You can see a map of hotels and accommodation in Casablanca below.

Things to do in Casablanca

  • Visit Hassan II Mosque
  • See L'Eglise du Sacre-Coeur
  • Explore Mohammed V Square
  • Go to the Casablanca derby

If you are travelling to Casablanca, there are a number of architectural feats worth seeing, including the Hassan II Mosque, which is perched on a beach overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.

Hassan II Mosque Casablanca Morocco general view

The Quartier Habous is a must-see neighbourhood and market (be prepared to haggle prices), while the Mohammed V Square is a historic public space, featuring a number of monuments and statues.

Of course, we would recommend that you try to take in a game involving Raja or Wydad (even better if it's both!).

Casablanca derby facts

  • Wydad are the most successful team in the history of the Botola Pro.
  • Raja won their first Botola title in 1988. At that point, Wydad had already won 12 titles.
  • Wydad wear red and white in their home jerseys. Raja wear green and white.
  • Raja Ultras supporters traditionally occupy the southern stand in Stade Mohammed V.
  • Wydad is the Arabic word for 'love' or 'sincere affection'.

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