Preview: Buoyant Ahly eyeing 4th straight win in Egyptian league

Ahram Online , Tuesday 20 Apr 2021

Ahly are in a buoyant mood following their 2-1 Cairo derby win over Zamalek on Sunday

Ahly players celebrate their win over Zamalek (Reuters)

Fresh from beating main challengers Zamalek in an entertaining Cairo derby, Ahly will be looking to secure a fourth consecutive Egyptian Premier League victory when they face Smouha on Wednesday.

The Red Devils look well-equipped to win a sixth straight title after a double from Mohamed Sherif gave them an impressive 2-1 win over Zamalek on Sunday, even though they missed several regulars.

The victory dealt a big blow to Zamalek's title aspirations, with Ahly having looked unstoppable domestically since they finished their Club World Cup campaign in Qatar, where they won the bronze medal in February.

Ahly will be eager not to drop any points against Smouha as they seek to assert their dominance. Although they are three points behind leaders Zamalek, they will go six points clear on top if they win their three games in hand.

"The derby is now behind us; we are fully focused on the match against Smouha," Ahly's football director Sayed Abdel-Hafiz said following the victory over Zamalek.

Smouha usually prove stubborn opponents to Ahly and Zamalek but they have been largely inconsistent this season. They have drawn six out of their last seven league matches, dropping to eighth in the 18-team table on 24 points.

Ahly were given a boost after influential goalkeeper Mohamed El-Shennawi was cleared to play against Smouha after recovering from a COVID-19 infection that ruled him out of the Cairo derby.

The team are still missing other regulars including left-back Ali Maaloul, right-back Mohamed Hani and central defender Yasser Ibrahim.

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