Zamalek ensure Egyptian League leadership after Nasr victory

Ahmed Abd El Rasoul , Monday 2 Feb 2015

Two second-half goals by Mostafa Fathi and Omar Gaber grant Zamalek a precious win in the Egyptian Premier League title race

Bassem Morsi
Zamalek's Bassem Morsi (Photo: Al-Ahram)

Zamalek continued their promising run for the first Egyptian Premier League title since 2002 after beating top-flight debutants Nasr 3-1 on Monday.

The Cairo giants came from behind to claim the victory and finish the first half of the Egyptian Premier League in style.

The victory extended the Whites' lead, as they are currently topping the league table with 44 points, six ahead of second-placed ENPPI and eleven clear of third-placed Ahly.

Nasr remained third from bottom with 14 points from 19 games.

Zamalek dominated the game since the early start, but without a real threat against the goal.

After five minutes only, Ahmed Elseidy had an early chance to give Nasr a sudden lead after a fatal error from Hazem Emam, but the goalkeeper Mahmoud Abdel-Rehim saved the Whites from a certain goal.

Promising playmaker Mostafa Fathy wasted a precious chance to score for Zamalek, followed by another missed one for midfielder Ahmed Tawfik.

After 20 minutes, Nasr wasn't an easy opponent for Zamalek as they managed to threaten the Whites’ goal in some chances.

Nasr midfielder Mohamed El-Azab cleverly escaped from Zamalek defenders in the 24th minute to score the opener.

It only took 10 minutes to see Zamalek restoring the balance as Basem Morsy powered in an excellent header to score the equaliser.

In the remaining minutes until the break, Zamalek intensified their counter attacks through active players like Omar Gaber, Hazem Emam, Ahmed Eid wasting many chances to score, while the hosts were also keeping pressure and tightened defence.

Better second half

Zamalek had a perfect start after the break with two successive chances to double the score by Omar Gaber and Hazem Emam but they weren't lucky enough.

Their dominance continued with intensive, yet unsuccessful trials to reach the goal, especially a perfect missed header by Omar Gaber.

Seeing his team struggling to reach the goal after 60 minutes, caretaker coach Mohamed Salah replaced Hazem Emam with playmaker Ayman Hefni in a bid to refresh his attacking line.

In his first start this season, tricky youngster Mostfa Fathi proved his worth after putting Zamalek on the lead, scoring his first goal of the season from a penalty in the 67th minute.

Burkinabe defender Mohamed Koffi replaced Ahmed Tawfik, while full back Ahmed Samir substituted Ahmed Eid to give more efficiency to Zamalek's defense.

The bar denied a certain goal for Nasr, while Zamalek replied with too many missed chances in the last ten minutes.

While both teams were fighting till the last minute, Omar Gaber suddenly ended the battle with a third goal for Zamalek at stoppage-time.

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