Preview: Zamalek seek domestic revival against in-form Ittihad of Alexandria

Ahram Online , Wednesday 10 Apr 2024

Cairo giants Zamalek aim to revive their faltering Egyptian Premier League campaign when they host high-flying Ittihad of Alexandria in a rescheduled game from the eighth matchday at the Cairo International Stadium on Thursday.

Omar Gaber
Zamalek veteran defender Omar Gaber running after the ball during the 3-2 defeat to Gouna in the Egyptian Premier League. Photo: Courtesy of Zamalek's official X account


The White Knights, perennial title contenders, have endured a disappointing season so far, languishing in 15th place with just 15 points from 11 games.

They find themselves 14 points adrift of league leaders Pyramids FC, who have played three more matches.

Their most recent domestic setback was a 3-2 defeat to Gouna on 13 March.

Zamalek's cause was hindered by a string of injuries to key players, including midfielder Youssef "Obama" Ibrahim, defender Mahmoud Alaa, and their starting goalkeeper, causing them to be sidelined.

Furthermore, veteran captain Mahmoud "Shikabala" Abdel-Razek is doubtful for the game due to flu, which forced him to miss the CAF Confederation Cup quarterfinal clash against Modern Future FC, along with winger Mostafa Shalaby who suffered a rib injury in the same match.

However, Ittihad arrived in a buoyant mood following a 3-2 away win at Masry last week, which propelled them into third place in the table with 27 points.

The coastal side's head coach Tarek El-Ashry is expected to rely on their formidable attacking force, featuring Angolan striker Mabululu and Ghanaian winger Benjamin Boateng.

This match holds significant implications for both clubs as they vie for crucial points in pursuing domestic glory.

A win for Zamalek would provide a much-needed boost to their morale ahead of the crucial derby encounter against archrivals and defending champions Ahly on Monday.

On the other hand, Ittihad will be aiming to extend their winning run and further cement their championship credentials with a positive result against wounded Zamalek.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)

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