Egypt's Zamalek at full strength for Champions League semi-final

Ahram Online , Tuesday 13 Oct 2020

Achraf Bencharki, Ferjani Sassi and Mahmoud Alaa lead a full-strength Zamalek squad for the African Champions League semi-final first leg

(Photo: Al-Ahram)

Egypt's Zamalek flew to Morocco on Tuesday with a full-strength side as they gear up for a mouthwatering clash against Raja in the first leg of the African Champions League semifinal on Sunday.

Influential duo Achraf Bencharki and Ferjani Sassi lead a strong 27-man squad announced by Zamalek coach Jaime Pacheco on Tuesday. The second leg will take place in Cairo on 24 October.

Moroccan winger Bencharki, who is arguably Zamalek's best performer this season, missed the White Knights' last three games in the domestic league and cup after being called up by his national team during the international break.

Tunisian holding midfielder Sassi made the squad after confirming that he is coronavirus-free, although he will link up with his teammates later than scheduled as he went into a five-day quarantine after he came into contact with aperson infected by COVID-19.

However, the 28-year-old's participation in the first leg remains in doubt as he has not trained since Sunday.

Egyptian international defender Mahmoud Alaa was also included in the roster after recovering from a minor injury he sustained during Zamalek's 2-1 league win over Harras El-Hodoud on Monday.

Veteran left-back Mohamed Abdel-Shafi was also named after recovering from a shoulder injury that has kept him on the sidelines since August. His return is a big boost to Zamalek but he is unlikely to be given a starting role against Raja.

Zamalek are bidding for their sixth Champions League title and the first since they defeated Raja 1-0 on aggregate in a two-legged final in 2002.

Zamalek's full Squad:

Goalkeepers: Mohamed Abou-Gabal, Mahmoud Gennesh, Mohamed Awad, Mohamed Sobhi. 

Defenders: Hazem Emam, Ahmed Eid, Mahmoud Hamdi, Mahmoud Alaa, Abdallah Gomaa, Mohamed Abdel-Shafi, Mohamed Abdel-Salam, Mohamed Abdel-Ghani.  

Midfielders: Tarek Hamed, Ahmed sayed, Ferjani Sassi, Eslam Gaber, Youssef Ibrahim, Achraf Bencharki, Mohamed Ounajem, Mostafa Fathi, Mohamed Antar, Karim Bambo.

Strikers: Mostafa Mohamed, Kabongo Kasongo, Omar El-Said.

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