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Ahly in stadium crisis ahead of Orlando Pirates match

The defending champions are still struggling to get a security clearance for Air Defence stadium because of the turmoil in Egypt

Karim Farouk, Friday 26 Jul 2013
Ahly fans celebrate after their team scored a goal against derby rivals Zamalek during their CAF Champions League soccer match at El-Gouna stadium in Hurghada (Photo: Reuters)
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Views: 2190

Cairo giants Ahly are having a hard time finding a venue for their Champions League face-off against South Africa's Orlando Pirates in the second match of the group stage, scheduled for 4 August.

The seven-time African champions had initially chosen the army-owned Air Defence stadium for the game, but failed to get the necessary security clearance because of the turmoil in the country.

According to Ahram Sport, the board is considering asking the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to postpone the game due to security concerns stemming from violence and clashes Egypt has witnessed since the massive 30 June protests that ousted President Mohamed Morsi. An official decision has yet to be announced..

The Cairo game between Zamalek and Ahly in the opening round of the group stage was also cut back due to security. It was moved to Gouna Stadium, a Red Sea resort, and played last Wednesday after being delayed twice.

The match was due to be played behind closed-doors, but fans from both sides defied the crowd ban and watched the game from the stands.

The Group A is deadlocked after the first round, with Zamalek-Ahly (1-1) and Orlando Pirates-Ac Leopards (0-0) ended in stalemate.

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