Zamalek’s assistant coach Osama Nabih says he expects fair play in the decisive match between Tunisia’s Esperance and Algeria’s MC Alger in the last round of the African Champions League group stage.
“Fair play is already the slogan of FIFA, and Zamalek doesn’t need to ask [teams] to adhere to it,” Nabih told ON Time Sports TV channel late on Sunday.
The Cairo giants recorded their first ever win in the group stage in Algeria after beating MC Alger 2-0 in their penultimate group-stage game on Saturday to keep their hopes of making it to the last eight of the prestigious competition alive.
Zamalek are third in Group D with five points, three behind MC Alger and five adrift of already-qualified Esperance.
Zamalek's only hope to qualify lies in beating Senegal's Teungueth at home on 10 April in their final game and hope Esperance defeat MC Alger. In this case, the White Knights will advance because of their better head-to-head record over MC Alger.
“Esperance is a big name like Ahly and Zamalek, and I can’t imagine that they will accept losing two consecutive games,” Nabih said about the Tunisian giants amid reports that already-qualified Esperance wouldn’t play their last game with the needed seriousness.
“I believe that Esperance will play fairly against MC Alger,” he added.
Under the Guidance of French coach Patrice Carteron, five-time African champions Zamalek are searching for their first Champions League title since 2002.
“We will stick with the existing hope till the last minute, even if our destiny isn’t in our hands,” the Zamalek assistant coach concluded.
(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)