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Preview: Egypt's Zamalek looking for cutting edge in vital Champions League clash

Ahram Online , Saturday 1 Jul 2017
Zamalek opened their African Champions League group-stage campaign with a 2-0 win over Zimbabwe's Caps United in May (Ahram)

Egypt's Zamalek will be hoping to turn their usual dominance into goals as they meet Zimbabwe's Caps United away from home on Sunday with an African Champions League quarter-final berth at stake.

The last year's runners-up paid for their profligacy in recent Champions League matches, having only claimed one win in four Group B games, which came against Caps United. 

Their hopes to advance to the last eight were dealt a serious blow following a 2-0 defeat at USM Alger last month and there will be no room for further stumbles as the group race heats up in the penultimate round.

USM Alger and Libya's Ahli Tripoli are joint leaders with eight points, three ahead of Zamalek and five clear of outsiders Caps United.

Should Zamalek beat Caps United in Harare, they will go level with Ahli Tripoli and USM Alger on top with one round remaining.

In the last round, Zamalek host Ahli Tripoli and Caps United visit USM Alger next week.

The White Knights have notably improved on the domestic level under Portuguese coach Augusto Inacio, securing five straight wins to almost ensure a third-place finish in the Egyptian Premier League.

However, their form in the Champions League has been shaky, particularly because of their wastefulness in front of goal.

In the away defeat by USM Alger, Zamalek squandered several clear-cut chances before falling behind.

Their main striker Bassem Morsi was left out of the Caps United clash after some poor displays but playmaker Ayman Hefni returns back after a lengthy absence due to injury.

"We are not thinking about our challengers in the group, we are only focusing on winning our two matches to ensure our progress to the quarter final," Zamalek football director Ismail Youssef said on the club's official website.

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