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Sunday, 29 March 2020

Zamalek coach complains of squad shortage after tough Wydad test

Zamalek, who defeated Morocco's Wydad 6-5 on aggregate, only have 14 registered players in their African Champions League squad

Mahmoud Elassal , Sunday 25 Sep 2016
Moamen Soliman
Moamen Soliman, coach of Egypt's El Zamalek. (Reuters)
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Zamalek coach Moemen Soliman said he had no options to solve his side's deficincies as they suffered a stunning 5-2 defeat at Morocco's Wydad but still managed to reach the African Champions League final by the skin of their teeth. 

Zamalek will face South Africa's Sundowns in the first leg of the Champions League final on 14 October.

Soliman complained about his team's African squad shortage, saying he was expecting a tough competition but has no tools to solve it.

Zamalek reached the final after beating Morocco's Wydad 6-5 on aggregate, having defeated them 4-0 in the first leg in Alexandria's Borg El-Arab stadium.

"I expected what happened as we are in a hard situation due to the squad shortage," Soliman said in quoted as saying after the game.

"We only have 14 registered players in the African squad."

"I knew the weakness points in my squad but I have no choices to solve it," the Zamalek coach added.

Zamalek striker Stanley Ohawuchi scored a decisive goal nine minutes from time as the Cairo giants reached their first Champions League final in 14 years despite following an unexpected drama.

"All we needed in the Wydad game was to score and that is what happened," Soliman explained.

"Wydad played a great game but we have to praise our achievement because we reached the final with only 14 players."

"Finally, I thank all the players for their effort against Wydad," Soliman concluded.

Zamalek set up a meeting with South Africa's Sundowns, who beat them twice in the group stage and reached the final after beating Zambia's ZESCO United 2-0 earlier in the day for a 3-2 aggregate victory.  

The first leg of the CAF Champions League final will be played on 14 October while the second leg to be played in Cairo on 21 October.

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