Ahly-Zamalek Cairo derby to take place in Alexandria

Ahram Online , Friday 23 Dec 2016

Zamalek 3-1 Ahly
Zamalek defeated Ahly 3-1 last August in the Egypt Cup final, which was played at Alexandrias' Borg El-Arab Stadium (Reuters)

Next week's Cairo derby between Ahly and Zamalek will take place at Alexandria's Borg El-Arab Stadium, the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) said on Friday.

The 86,000-seat army-owned venue is the biggest in the Middle East but Thursday's Egyptian Premier League clash will be played behind closed doors due to a long-standing crowd ban in domestic football.

"We have the approval of Zamalek [the match's hosts] and the Egyptian army to stage the match at Borg El-Arab," EFA executive director Tharwat Swelam was quoted as saying by state media.

The biggest fixture in Egyptian football used to be played at Cairo International Stadium, a 74,100-seat venue, but it last hosted the match in June 2011.

The derby was moved to other stadiums following a football tragedy in February 2012 that led to the death of more than 70 Ahly fans in coastal city Port Said.

Borg El-Arab Stadium hosted the last Cairo derby, with Zamalek defeating Ahly 3-1 in the Egypt Cup final in August.

Ahly are on top of the league table with 42 points, 11 clear of Zamalek who have three matches in hand.

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