Ahly coach rues missed chances against Raja, expects difficult road to Champions League semis

Ahmed Abd El Rasoul , Sunday 17 Apr 2022

Ahly coach Pitso Mosimane rued his team’s several missed scoring chances in Saturday’s 2-1 win over Raja of Morocco, stressing that the Reds still have a difficult test ahead of them in the return match to ensure a place in the African Champions League’s semis.

Ahly coach Mosimane

Title holders Ahly took a slender first-leg advantage after beating 10-man Raja 2-1 at home in the prestigious tournament’s quarterfinals.

“We had to ensure our qualification from the first leg, but we missed a lot of easy scoring chances. I believe in the ability of my team to reach the semi-final,” the South African coach said in the press conference after the match.

Record seven-time African champions Ahly nabbed an early lead via a controversial penalty from midfielder Amr El-Sulaya before winger Hussein El-Shahat — who made a rare start — doubled their advantage midway through the first half.

Midfielder Mohamed Zrida scored Raja’s only goal directly before the break to keep the Moroccans’ hopes of reaching the last four alive ahead of the second leg that will take place in Casablanca on Friday.

“The return match will be a very difficult one. Winning in Morocco is difficult, but we have done it before. I will talk with my players on some technical points, and I believe that we will win the game in Casablanca,” the coach said.

“We should offer our full support for Ahly’s players. My role is to work hard with my players, but at the same time, I am not a magician that can solve the issue of missed chances,” added Mosimane, who led Ahly to back-to-back Champions League titles.

Ahly are seeking to become the first team to win a hat-trick of successive Champions League crowns.

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