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Zamalek claim narrow win over Geish following McLeish departure

Zamalek seemed far from affected by Alex McLeish's departure as they secured a 2-1 win over Talae El-Geish

Ahram Online , Tuesday 3 May 2016
Zamalek players celebrate after taking the lead through Mahmoud Kahraba in the 43rd minute (Photo: Ahram)

A post-Alex McLeish Zamalek held on to claim a narrow a 2-1 Egyptian League win over Talae El-Geish just one day after the departure of the Scottish manager.

With new members being introduced in the first-team's management by club chief Mortada Mansour instead of McLeish and his assistants, Zamalek did not quite face a stern test to overcome a toothless Geish - who were 2-0 down after the hour-mark.

Mahmoud Kahraba gave Zamalek the lead in the first half on the rebound following Emmanuel Mayuka's blocked strike before the latter doubled his side's advantage after the break.

Geish, who handed Zamalek a bitter 3-1 defeat in the reverse fixture under the management of Tarek Yehia, refused to give up though – with Assem Salah swerving a beautiful free-kick home deep into stoppage time.

McLeish, who guided Zamalek to the Champions League last-eight and the Egypt Cup round of 16, had his deal rescinded by mutual consent with the club's board after being appointed in February following some dismal league displays.

Reigning champions Zamalek, who were managed by former stars Mohamed Helmi and Mohamed Salah, remain in second spot on 48 points, eight adrift of leaders Ahly who play rock bottom Haras El-Hodoud on Wednesday.  

A low-tempo first-half saw the first of chances arrive after 19 minutes, when midfielder Tarek Hamed missed the target with a low shot following a pass from Kahraba.

Seven minutes later, defender Mohamed Koffi had a header denied by Geish keeper Mohamed Bassam following a set piece.

And it was just two minutes from half-time when Kahraba, who started as a left winger in a 4-2-3-1 formation, gave Zamalek the lead following a good team move.

A silky through pass from midfielder Hamed was met by a nice low cross from left-back Mohamed Adel, with Kahraba eventually smashing on the rebound after Zambian striker Mayuka had been thwarted by the keeper.

Just three minutes after seeing a goal disallowed for offside, Mayuka bagged Zamalek's second of the night after rounding the keeper to slot into an empty net following a Mohamed Ibrahim through ball on 60 minutes.

With the game seemingly settled, Geish forced a nervy ending to the match with Bassam scoring a free-kick deep into stoppage time but Zamalek managed to hold onto their slender lead and come up with all three points. 

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