Ahly's new coach Hossam El-Badry (Photo: Ahram)
Ahly coach Hossam El-Badry has criticised the organisers of the Egypt Super Cup for scheduling the match one week after the final of the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.
Cairo giants Ahly and Zamalek international players arrived Tuesday in the United Arab Emirates to join the two teams' current training camps amid preparations for the Super Cup match on 10 February.
"The team suffers from the international players' absence in the senior national team and the military team," El-Badry told a pre-game conference in the UAE.
"The international players confirmed their readiness to take part in the Super Cup game against Zamalek, despite their fatigue from participating in the 2017 AFCON," he added.
With the participation of Ahly and Zamalek players, Egypt finished the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations in second place after losing 1-2 to Cameroon in the final game on Sunday.
"The Super Cup timing is bad for the two sides given the international players' exhaustion," El-Badry said.
The Super Cup, which was supposed to be the season's curtain raiser but was postponed to February, will take place in the UAE for the second time.
"Playing the Egypt Super Cup game in the Emirates is a good decision; we can see good organisation despite the game's poor timing," the Ahly coach said.
"At this point I still don't know what will happen if the game finishes with a draw."
"[I don't know whether] we will play extra time or go to penalty shoots directly." The Ahly coach concluded.
In October 2015, Ahly defeated Zamalek 3-2 to win a record-extending ninth Super Cup title. Zamalek have won the trophy only twice.
Ahly lead this season's league table with 45 points, 11 ahead of third-place Zamalek who still have two matches ahead of them.
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