Toothless Zamalek eke out 1-0 win over Abu Salim in Confederation Cup Group stage opener

Ahram Online , Sunday 26 Nov 2023

Egyptian side Zamalek managed to secure a narrow 1-0 win against Libyan team Abu Salim in their Confederation Cup Group stage opener at Alexandria's Borg El-Arab stadium on Sunday.

Zamalek Winger Youssef obama During the match. Zamalek X Official Accont


The victory marked a rare successful start for Zamalek in the Group stages.

During the last six years, Zamalek have struggled to begin the Group stage with a win in continental club competitions.

However, forward Youssef 'Obama' Ibrahim broke that trend, delivering Zamalek their first opening-game win since 2017 when they defeated Zimbabwe's Caps United 2-0 in the Champions League.

Ibrahim's impressive glancing header, meeting Ahmed 'Zizo's' excellent cross, found the back of the net in the 73rd minute.

With this win, Zamalek now sit atop the Group with three points, on level with Angola's Sagrada Esperanca, who secured a 2-0 victory over Guinea's Academie SOAR earlier in the day.

Despite emerging victorious, Zamalek's performance during the match was unconvincing, failing to pose a significant threat against a defensively-minded Abu Salim side.

In fact, for the first 74 minutes, Zamalek struggled to create any notable chances, relying on Obama's header from a set piece to secure the winner.

Interim coach Moatamed Gamal attempted to inject offensive prowess into the team by introducing the duo of Samson Akinyoola and Nasser Mansi, but they failed to make their presence felt.

On the other hand, Abu Salim were satisfied with a draw and effectively contained Zamalek's few timid offensive attempts.

However, following Zamalek's goal, Abu Salim were compelled to push forward in search of an equalizer.

They came close in injury time when their captain's header hit the crossbar.

In their next fixture, Zamalek will visit Academie SOAR, while Abu Salim will host Sagrada Esperanca.

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