Zamalek revive Champions League hopes after defeating Esperance de Tunis

Ahram Online , Tuesday 7 Mar 2023

Zamalek defeated Tunisian side Esperance 3-1 in their first win in the champions league group stage game at Alexandria’s Borg El-Arab stadium on Tuesday to keep their hopes alive in the continental competition.


With the win, the Cairo giants now lie third in Group D with four points, two points behind  CR Belouizdad of Algeria who are now in second with six points after defeating Al-Merrikh of Sudan also on Tuesday.

Despite the loss tonight, Esperance remain comfortable on top of the group stage with 9 points.

In two do-or-die missions, Zamalek will face the Algerian side away from home on Friday 17 November before hosting Al-Merrikh a week later in the final day of the Group stage.

The Cairo giants need to secure six points from these two clashes to clinch one of the qualifying two tickets of the Group to the competition’s quarters.

Zamalek international winger Ahmed ‘Zizo’ Sayed eased past his challenger in the 9th minute, sending a nice pass to Seif Gaafar whose shot from the edge of the area was slightly deflected by an Esperance defender to beat the keeper.   

Zizo turned from provider to scorer 20 minutes later after converting a penalty gained by Tunisian striker Seif Jaziri.

The Tunisian side seemed incapable of posing much trouble for the hosts throughout the first half.

The visitors first threat came just before the break when Houssem Dagdoug powerful shot was denied by Keeper Mohamed Sobhi.

However, second half substitute Riad Benayad rewarded his coach as he scored for the Tunisians 11 minutes after his entry to the pitch to reduce the deficit.

A defensive lapse allowed Benayad to score easily after receiving a nice pass from Ghaylen Chaaleli.

The Tunisians pulled on the attack to level the score, coming very close with 12 minutes from time but Mohamed Ali's nice header was denied by Sobhi.

Zamalek retreated to defense but relied on the counters and Seif Jaziri and substitute Senegalese winger Ibrahima N’Daye, who squandred two easy chances.

In the dying minutes, Zizo shone again, sending a pinpoint to Seif Jaziri who scored easily with a diving header to kill the game.

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