Ahly's coach laments fans absence against Orlando

Ahram Online , Thursday 1 Oct 2015

Egyptian authorities are reluctant to allow fans to attend games after 20 Zamalek supporters died in a stampede before a domestic match in February

Ahly's coach Fathi Mabrouk (Reuters)

Ahly's coach Fathi Mabrouk is disappointed after Egyptian security decided that Sunday's Confederation Cup clash against Orlando Pirates in the competition's semis will be played in an empty stadium without fans.

"We need our fans to be present against Orlando Pirates," Ahly's coach Fathi Mabrouk told reporters on Thursday.

"Fans are a great motivation to the players and they are one of the important factors of success for any team in the world," Mabrouk added.   

Ahly have already asked Egyptian security officials to allow the fans to attend the match but the authorities are still reluctant to do so after more than 20 Zamalek supporters died in a stampede before a domestic league game in February.

The defending champions will host the South African side on Sunday in the second-leg of the Confederation Cup semis as they will be looking to overturn their 1-0 first-leg defeat to go through to the final.

Mabrouk added that his players are determined to overcome the South African side and to make it into the finals, confirming that players' experience will help them to achieve their mission.

"The team has enough motivation to make it to the African Cup final," Mabrouk added.

"The defeat is not so hard to handle. We have a good chance to win at home and make it to the finals as we are playing to win the title." 

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