Zamalek wasn’t in its best shape in Tuesday’s 1-0 loss to Tunisian side Esperance, according to the newly appointed coach Patrice Carteron, who also vowed to fight to keep the team’s chances at the African Champion League alive.
The Whites’ hopes of reaching the Champions League quarter finals became nearly impossible after losing 1-0 to Esperance at the Cairo Stadium in the 4th round of the prestigious tournament’s group stage.
“Zamalek was not ready on both the psychological and physical levels. We will have much work to do in the coming period. The players only showed 50 percent of their performance against Esperance,” the French coach said in the press conference after the game.
“The league matches are totally different from those of the Champions League. Facing Esperance in such a difficult situation in the group wasn’t such an easy one.
“Good Psychological and mental circumstances can grant players a huge power on the field. You can win the league title, but in the Champions league it is a different situation,” he added.
Tuesday’s loss was a disappointing start for Frenchman Carteron after succeeding Portuguese manager Jaime Pacheco, who was dismissed last week.
The White Knights remain in third place, with just two points after four games, six points behind leaders Esperance.
Algerian side MC Alger are second with eight points after defeating Teungueth of Senegal 1-0 on Tuesday.
Zamalek have a mountain to climb, as they must win their two remaining games, including their away tie against MC Alger, and the latter must lose their two remaining games.
“We will fight till the end to keep our chances in the Champions League alive and we will work hard to make the best use of the available options,” the Zamalek coach concluded.
Zamalek will face MC Alger on the 2nd of April before hosting Teungueth one week later.
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