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Preview: Zamalek aim to hit top gear after inconsistent start to season

Ahram Online , Wednesday 15 Aug 2018
Zamalek
Zamalek crushed Ittihad 5-1 in their previous Egyptian Premier League game (Photo: the club's official Facebook page)
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Zamalek will be looking to hit top gear when they meet Maqassa in a tough Egyptian Premier League game on Thursday after an inconsistent start to the season under Swiss coach Christian Gross.

The White Knights were held to a 0-0 draw by Petrojet in their opening league game before thrashing Ittihad of Alexandria 5-1 after putting in a vivid attacking display.

However, they were then unable to break down Kuwait's Qadsia to settle for a 0-0 draw in the Arab Club Champions Cup for their second stalemate in three matches under Gross in all competitions.

Zamalek looked defensively vulnerable in the three games despite conceding only one goal as they struggled to deal with any fast breakaways. They were given a let-off by the wastefulness of their opponents.

Gross, who took over in the summer, was quoted as telling his players following the draw against Qadsia that he will not accept anything other than a win over Maqassa, who collected three points from their opening two games.

Zamalek made a host of high-profile signings in the summer but the new recruits might need time to gel into the team, who are used to making many changes to their squad every season.

Tunisia midfielder Ferjani Sassi may make his first start after making a cameo appearance against Qadsia while Moroccan winger Hamid Ahaddad could be also given a chance to play.

Full-back Hamdi Nagguez, a Tunisian international, was ruled out of the game as he remains short of match fitness after recovering from injury.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)

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