Zamalek's Shikabala apologises, avoids sanctions for joining Ultras celebration

Ahram Online , Monday 9 May 2016

Zamalek star Shikabala avoided a series of severe sanctions after apologising to the club chairman for participating in an Ultras celebration

Shikabala (R) appears as Zamalek fans'gather at Omar Gaber's house in Cairo celebrating with Zamalek fans on Sunday night (Photo: Courtesy of Omar Gaber Facebook page)

Zamalek skipper Shikabala briefly fell out with club chairman Mortada Mansour on Monday, with the player facing suspension for attending an Ultras celebration on Sunday night before sanction was later reversed.

"The crisis is over after the player's apology," Zamalek's board member Ahmed Mortada told reporters on Monday.

Earlier on Monday, Shikabala was hit with a series of sanctions by the club's management for participating in a farewell party organised by the hardcore Zamalek fan-group for the team's international defender Omar Gaber, who is joining Swiss side Basel.

Zamalek's president Mortada Mansour, who has been involved in several bust-ups with the team's fans since being re-elected as Zamalek chairman in March 2014, reacted harshly with sanctions against his player.

The 29-year-old was stripped of the team's captaincy and suspended indefinitely. The club's president revealed that the player would be placed in the team's departure list in this summer's transfer window.

"Shikabala attended in the Ultras party and I totally reject his behavior," Mansour told reporters early on Monday. "The Ultras are terrorist groups. This issue is a red line for me."

"After his suspension the player is for sale."

Zamalek's board members reportedly managed to convince the chairman to accept an apology from Shikabala, who is training as usual with his teammates after the reconciliation.

The former international forward, who is one of the most popular players in the club's history, endured a miserable spell with Sporting in 2014 in Portugal where he made a single appearance

Shikabala rejoined boyhood club Zamalek in the summer before being loaned out to Ismaily until the end of the season.

He returned to Zamalek in the winter transfer window after terminating his loan with Ismaily on mutual consent, though he failed to establish himself with the White Knights as he is yet to regain his form.

This is not the first time Mansour has threatened to place a player in the team's departure list, as he took the same decision against striker Bassem Morsi earlier this year before reversing his decision.

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