Ahly coach Koller slams African Football League's schedule

Ahmed Abd El Rasoul , Saturday 30 Sep 2023

Ahly coach Marcel Koller slammed the African Football League fixtures, stressing that the team’s dense schedule will affect his players negatively.

 Ahly s Swiss coach Marcel Koller
File photo: Ahly s Swiss coach Marcel Koller speaks to his players during the FIFA Club World Cup second round football match between Seattle Sounders FC and Egypt s Al-Ahly at the Ibn Batouta Stadium in Tangier on February 4, 2023. AFP


The first-ever edition of the African Football League (AFL) is set to kick off on 20 October.

The Cairo giants will start their mission in the quarter-finals the same day, facing Simba in Tanzania in the first leg. The second leg will occur in Cairo four days later.

“The dates of the African Football League fixtures are not suitable. The international players, whether Egyptians or other nationality, will suffer because of the dense schedule,” the Ahy coach told the club’s TV channel on Friday.

The next international break will begin on 9 October, with the Egyptian national team holding a training camp from 9 to 17 October.

“They did not consider the hard travelling circumstances that face the international players as moving inside Africa takes long hours. I cannot judge if my international players would be fit for the Simba game when they join my team after finishing the international camp,” the Swiss tactician added.

The AFL competition, introduced by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) in collaboration with FIFA, showcases eight teams from across the continent.

On Friday, defending champions Ahly reached CAF Champions League group stage after crushing Ethiopia’s Saint George 4-0 in the second leg of the round of 32.

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