Ahly extend winless league run to 4 games with draw against NBE Club

Ahram Online , Wednesday 18 May 2022

Ahly extended an astonishing winless run to four games after being held to a goalless draw by NBE Club in an exciting Egyptian Premier League clash on Wednesday.


With defending champions Zamalek suffering a second consecutive defeat after losing 1-0 to Talae El-Geish on Tuesday, Ahly, who still have several games in hand, could have taken full advantage with a victory over NBE.

However, they could only collect a point after being guilty of missing several easy chances in the first half.

In the second period, they were lucky not to lose after a daring NBE side missed a sitter three times as Ahly's porous defence was repeatedly exposed on the break.

The fresh stumble will ring alarm bells before Ahly meet Morocco's Wydad in an anticipated African Champions League final on 30 May. They will still play two domestic league games against Enppi and Eastern Company before then.

Ahly lost once and drew three times in their past four league games, scoring only once. Another worrying aspect was an injury first-choice keeper Mohamed El-Shennawi picked up against NBE, which forced him out in the second half.

The Red Devils, who are seeking to wrestle the title back from arch rivals Zamalek, are third in the table with 34 points from 15 games. Zamalek top the table with 41 points from 19 games and Pyramids are second on 39 points from 18 matches.

NBE, who also held Ahly to two draws last season, lie eighth with 25 points.

Absent stars

Ahly struggled without their entire three-man midfield, with Hamdi Fathi, Amr El-Sulaya and Malian Aliou Dieng missing the match through injuries.

Both sides had chances to score in an end-to-end first half, although Ahly had the lion's share of clear-cut opportunities.

Ahly came close on at least three occasions, with their neat intricate passing game unsettling NBE's defence, although their finishing had let them down.

Playmaker Magdi Afsha fired an audacious shot just over the crossbar and striker Mohamed Sherif missed the target when played clean through in the first 11 minutes.

At the other end, NBE's best chance fell to winger Karim Bambo, who had a far-post diving header tipped over by El-Shennawi on 19 minutes.

Ahly's left-back Mahmoud Wahid, deputizing for Tunisian Ali Maaloul, thought he had opened the scoring on the half-hour mark when he was released by a superb one-two with Percy Tau before drilling an angled shot home.

However, the goal was disallowed after a VAR review found midfielder Rami Rabia to have committed an error when playing a free-kick in the build-up, having kicked the ball when it was still not stationary.

Sherif could only fire straight at the keeper from close range following a pull-back from Tau early in the second half but it was then all NBE, whose devastating counter attacks could have stunned Ahly.

Bambo was guilty of two glaring misses, including one that he hit wide with the goal gaping after a low cross found him unmarked in the six-yard box.

Forward Mohamed Helal also blasted over the bar with the goal at his mercy after a defence-splitting pass released him.

Ahly's late pressure yielded some half chances as NBE breathed a sigh of relief to have shared honours following the final whistle.

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

Short link: