Zamalek move second after easy win

Hatem Maher, Friday 28 Oct 2011

Amr Zaki continues his fine goal-scoring run as Zamalek ease past El-Entag El-Harby in the Egyptian Premier League on Friday

Amr Zaki
Amr Zaki headed home the opener against El-Entag El-Harby (Photo: Abdel-Hamid Eid)

Zamalek moved second in the Egyptian Premier League after claiming an easy 3-1 victory over 10-man El-Entag El-Harby in Suez on Friday.

In-form striker Amr Zaki gave Zamalek a first-half lead and matters went from bad to worse for El-Entag when diminutive midfielder Wagih Abdel-Azim was dismissed for a second bookable offence.

El-Entag striker Mohamed Abd-Rabou “Felix” equalized against the run of play eight minutes after the restart when he made the most of a defensive mistake but veteran midfielder Ahmed Hassan put Zamalek ahead again with a simple tap in shortly after.

Substitute Ahmed Gaafar made sure of the win with 11 minutes remaining as Zamalek, who are eyeing their first league triumph since 2004, made up for their disappointing 1-1 draw with El-Gaish earlier this week.

The Cairo giants moved second in the table with seven points, one behind arch-rivals Ahly who played a game more. El-Entag, who made a poor start to the season, lie third from bottom with two points.

Firm control

Felix could have given El-Entag an early lead but he fired wide with the goal at his mercy following a defensive lapse.

Zamalek then took firm control, outplaying El-Entag in every aspect of the game as attacking trio Zaki, Hassan and Mahmoud Abdel-Razek “Shikabala” wreaked havoc in their opponents’ defence.

Their pressure paid dividends after 13 minutes when Zaki towered above his marker to powerfully head an inch-perfect cross from Shikabala past El-Entag keeper, taking his tally to three goals in as many games.

Zamalek squandered several chances to double their advantage as El-Entag were unable to stop a wave of attacks.

The lively Hassan had a free header palmed by keeper Ahmed Saad, who also tipped over a superb angled free-kick from Shikabala.

El-Entag had Abdel-Azim, who left Zamalek in the close season after failing to prove his worth, sent off in the 32nd minute for a foul on right-back Ahmed Samir.

Despite their numerical disadvantage, El-Entag managed to level the score following a dreadful blunder from Zamalek centre back Salah Soliman in the 53rd minute.

A miscued clearance by the former Ghazl El-Mahalla man following a punt by El-Entag guardian allowed Felix to sneak behind him and volley the ball home from inside the area.

El-Entag’s celebrations were short-lived, however, as Zamalek restored their lead two minutes later.

The overlapping Samir sprinted to the by-line after exchanging passes with Shikabala before pulling the ball back for Hassan, who slotted into an empty net after Saad misjudged the low cross.

Gaafar ensured the win with 11 minutes remaining when he skipped past a challenger before sending a right-foot shot which was initially saved by Saad. He struck on the rebound to put the result beyond doubt.        

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