Ahly striker apologises for 'Rabaa' salute

Ahmed Abd El Rasoul , Tuesday 12 Nov 2013

Red Devils striker will accept any punishment from Ahly management for his behavior, agent Mohamed Shiha tells Ahram Online

Ahmed Abdelzaher (L) of Egypt's Al Ahli celebrates after scoring a goal against South Africa's Orlando Pirates during their African Champions League final soccer match at the Arab Contractors Stadium in Cairo, November 10, 2013 (Photo: Reuters)

Ahly striker Ahmed Abdel-Zaher has apologised to Egyptians for displaying the 'Rabaa' salute in Sunday's Champions League final, the player's agent Mohamed Shiha confirmed to Ahram Online.

The Red Devils hitman stirred controversy when he made the four-finger Rabaa sign – a hand salute representing the former protest camp in support of ousted president Mohamed Morsi – after scoring a goal in Sunday's game against the Orlando Pirates.

"In an official statement today, Abdel-Zaher apologised to Ahly management and all Egyptian football fans for displaying the 'Rabaa' sign," Shiha explained to Ahram Online on Tuesday.

"The player didn't intend to offend anyone. His behaviour was only to show solidarity with one of his friends who died in Rabaa," he added.

Late on Monday, Ahly's football committee decided to suspend Abdel-Zaher and to freeze all of his financial dues until the matter is investigated on Tuesday.

The striker will also be subject to additional investigations by the Egyptian Football Association (EFA).

On Sunday, an Egyptian Kung Fu fighter was banned from the sport for one year after making the same gesture at a competition in Russia.

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