Zamalek face early Arab Cup exit after Al-Shabab loss

Ahram Online , Monday 31 Jul 2023

Egyptian side Zamalek suffered a 1-0 defeat to Al-Shabab of Saudi Arabia in a Group Stage game of the Arab Cup on Monday, diminishing their hopes of reaching the quarterfinals of the regional competition.

Al Shabab Club
Zamalek winger Shikabala fight for the ball during the game against Al-Shabab (Photo: Al Shabab Club official twitter account)

Argentinian forward Ever Banega scored the only goal of the match, converting a penalty one minute before halftime.

Currently, Zamalek is in second place in the Group with three points, one point behind leaders Al-Shabab.

Meanwhile, Al-Nassr, the team of Cristiano Ronaldo, sit in third place with one point.

They will play against Monastir, a team at the bottom of the Group without a single point, later in the day, and it is highly likely that they will secure an easy win.

In the final round, Zamalek will play against Al-Nassr, while Al-Shabab will face Monastir.

Zamalek coach Juan Carlos Osorio made several changes to the squad that defeated Monastir 4-0 in the Group opener, but the team produced a lackluster performance in the first half, failing to pose a threat to the Saudi side.

Al-Shabab were awarded a penalty just before the break after defender Mohamed Abdel-Ghani touched the ball with his hand inside the area.

Although Zamalek dominated possession in the second half, they struggled to create opportunities in their front line.

The only chance came 15 minutes after the hour-mark when Ahmed 'Zizo' Sayed's shot was denied by the bar.

Zamalek will face an uphill task on Thursday when they take on Saudi giants El-Nassr, and they must win to secure their place in the next round.

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