Coach of Egypt's Zamalek, Jesualdo Ferreira (R) of Portugal, reacts during their Egyptian Premier League derby soccer match against Al Ahly at Borg El Arab "Army Stadium", west of the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, July 21, 2015. The match was played without spectators due to security reasons. (Reuters)
After Zamalek's 1-0 loss to AC Leopards in the CAF Confederation Cup on Sunday, Zamalek manager Jesualdo Ferreira has said that the stadium's poor condition was responsible for the dip in form from his players during the game.
Zamalek paid for some sloppy finishes in front of goal in the away match versus Congo's Leopards, even though the team only needed a draw to book a Confederation Cup semi-final berth with two matches to go.
Leopards' striker Tresor Mukendi scored the winner for the hosts in the 61st minute, punishing Zamalek for missing some clear-cut chances – courtesy of some poor finishing from striker Bassem Morsi and newly signed forward Mahmoud 'Kahraba' Abdel-Moneim.
"The poor condition of the stadium ground is the main reason for the loss to the Leopards," Ferreira was quoted as saying on the club's official website after the game.
The result meant that South Africa's Orlando Pirates leapfrogged Zamalek to the top of Group B on goal difference, leaving both teams are now level on nine points.
Zamalek will now need to take a point from their upcoming two games - a visit to Tunisia's Sfaxien and a home fixture with Orlando Pirates.
"No team continues winning all their games, as it's the first loss in the CAF Confederation Cup group stage," the Zamalek tactician added.
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