Second-half flurry fires Zamalek to CAF Confederation Cup group stage

Ahram Online , Saturday 30 Sep 2023

Egyptian side Zamalek produced an impressive second-half comeback to beat Arta Solar of Djibouti 4-1 on Saturday in Cairo and secure a spot in the CAF Confederation Cup group stage.

Zamalek defender Hamza Mathlouthi celebrates after scoring the fourth goal against Arta Solar on Saturday in Cairo.


The visitors took a schocking lead in the 15th minute when midfielder Warsama Hasan found the net from close range after a brilliant solo effort by Yacouba Songne, who skillfully dribbled past two defenders to set up him in the box.

However, Zamalek turned the tide in the second half, scoring four goals through substitute Youssef "Obama" Ibrahim, Mahmoud "Shikabala" Abdel-Razek, Ahmed "Zizo" El Sayed, and Hamza Mathlouthi.

Zamalek began the game with a relentless attacking approach, creating early opportunities with two free kicks near Arta Solar's goal. However, their attempts failed to find the back of the net as the Djiboutian side relied on defensive discipline and counter-attacks.

The second half proved to be a thrilling turnaround for the White Knights. They continued their offensive pressure and were denied twice by the post.

Second half substitute Obama earned Zamalek the equalizer just five minutes after the break with a header following Zizo's free kick that struck the crossbar.

Shortly after, Shikabala scored the second goal after meeting Obama's cross from the left side.

Zizo extended Zamalek's lead in the 74th minute with a header, capitalizing on Ibrahima Ndiaye's shot that was parried by Arta Solar's goalkeeper Jean-Noel Amonome.

Tunisian defender Hamza Mathlouthi sealed the qualification with a well-placed shot after another mistake by the Djiboutian keeper.

The White Knights, who won the title in 2019, advance to the group stage with a 5-3 aggregate win to overturn their 2-0 defeat in the first leg. 

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