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Ahly move top with easy win over Contractors

Ahly move top, at least on a temporary basis, after easing past Arab Contractors with a 2-1 league win on Saturday

Hatem Maher, Saturday 28 Jan 2012
Ahly V Contractors
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Two goals from Mohamed Nagy “Geddo” and Ahmed Fathi lifted Ahly to the Egyptian Premier League summit following an easy 2-0 home victory over struggling outfit Arab Contractors on Saturday.

A clinical first-half finish from Geddo and a penalty from right-back Fathi after the break handed the Cairo giants, who are chasing an eighth consecutive league crown, their third win in a row.

The hosts finished with ten men after central defender Ahmed El-Sayed was handed a straight red card for a last-man foul on Contractors’ attacking midfielder Mohamed Salah.

Ahly have 36 points from 14 games, two ahead of surprise package Harras El-Hodoud who can regain their position on the top if they beat Ittihad of Alexandria in a rescheduled game on Tuesday. Ahly also moved four points clear of arch-rivals Zamalek, who suffered a surprise 2-1 defeat by ENPPI on Friday.

Contractors, who have dismissed coach Mohamed Radwan recently, remain third from bottom with 10 points.

Offensive-minded strategy

Reverting to a firm offensive-minded strategy that features one central midfielder in Hossam Ashour, Ahly easily dominated the first half, moving the ball around smoothly.

Lively playmaker Abdallah El-Saied, who orchestrated most of Ahly’s attacks, had a powerful free-kick parried by Arab Contractors keeper and former teammate Mahmoud Aboul-Saoud, who is on loan from the Red Devils.

He then shot wide with the goal gaping after a poor defensive clearance midway through the first half before striker Dominique Da Silva had a close-range shot thwarted by Aboul-Saoud, who produced a superb display.

The Mauritania frontman made up for the wasted effort when he set up Geddo for the opener in the 32nd minute, his defence-splitting pass releasing the Egyptian international who slotted home with aplomb.

Dominique and winger Walid Solman had to be substituted in the second half after picking up injuries, making way for El-Sayed Hamdi and Shehab Ahmed respectively.

Ahly were awarded a penalty after Hamdi tumbled in the area under a challenge from Contractors full-back Bassem Ali. Fathi, who usually takes free-kicks rather than spot-kicks, stepped up to blast the ball into the roof of the net although Aboul-Saoud got a hand to it.

Ahly wasted several chances to extend the gap in the latter stages as they claimed a comfortable victory.

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