Preview: Zamalek's new coach Carteron to start second stint with do-or-die mission against Esperance

Mahmoud Sheleib , Tuesday 16 Mar 2021

Soccer Football - African Super Cup Final - Esperance Sportive de Tunis v Zamalek - Thani bin Jassim Stadium, Al Rayyan, Qatar - February 14, 2020 Esperance Sportive de Tunis' Fousseny Coulibaly in action with Zamalek's Obama REUTERS

Zamalek’s newly assigned coach Patrice Carteron will face a tough mission in his first match on Tuesday against Tunisia's Esperance.

The French coach said that he had the chance to return to lead the team after the Esperance game, but preferred to take the challenging mission from beginning to end.

Zamalek are placed third in Group D of the African Champions League with two points, behind Esperance and Algeria's MC Alger.

The Whites have lost an away game against Esperance 3-1, and tied 0-0 against both Senegal's Tuengueth and MC Alger.

"I'm happy to return to Zamalek, I know I came back at a tough time after collecting only two points out of three matches," Carteron said in the pre-match press conference.

"I came and found that the players are far from their peak physical form. I worked to prepare them physically, technically, individually and collectively to achieve a positive result.

"During the last three days, our talk was about enjoying our time playing football, and recovering confidence and our fighting spirit," he added.

Carteron concluded his remarks by saying that there are no alternatives to victory against Esperance, stressing that he has faith in all the players and they can win the game.

The Whites' interim board announced late on Thursday the signing of Carteron just a few months after his shocking departure from Saudi Arabia's Al-Taawon.

The 50-year-old will replace Portuguese coach Jaime Pacheco, who was dismissed after leaders Zamalek defeated Ceramica Cleopatra 2-0 at the Egyptian Premier League, extending their lead over Ahly to six points, although the latter still have three games in hand.

Carteron led Zamalek against Esperance on three occasions: at the CAF Super Cup, which the Whites clinched with a 3-1 victory, and at the African Champions League quarterfinals, where Zamalek won at home 3-1 and lost 0-1 in the away game.

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