Mohamed Aboutrika of Egypt's Ahly (Photo: Reuters)
Ahly coach Hossam El-Badry says he helped to limit the punishment doled out to club star Mohamed Abou-Treika, who announced that he completely accepts the club's decision.
Late on Monday, the Cairo giants management decided to suspended the veteran playmaker for two months and fine him LE500,000 for refusing to participate in the Egypt Super Cup on Sunday.
The Pharaohs star, who was also stripped of the captain's armband, missed Ahly's 2-1 win over ENPPI to support the demands of the team's Ultras fans, who reject the resumption of domestic football until the perpetrators of the deadly Port Said stadium attack on fans are brought to justice.
Abou-Treika's decision angered the club's board, which insisted that the player would be "severely sanctioned, while several fans, especially from Ultras groups, heaped praise on him for the same reason.
"I didn't ask to release Abou-Treika as he is one of the club icons. I helped to limit the sanctions," El-Badry was quoted as saying by Ahram sport.
"The management took into consideration the fact that it's the first mistake for the player, who has a great history, since he joined the club," he added.
On Saturday, The 33-year old player, Abou-Treika, stressed that didn't mean to embarrass Ahly, the club he is honored to play for, nor its management that he totally respect.
He also apologized for any embarrassment he may have caused to the board, the team's management and his teammates as he is totally committed by the club's rules.
After the announcement of the punishment, the player has repeated his apology.
"I respect Ahly and I totally accept the punishment," the veteran player said in a statement late on Monday.
"I was eager to call the technical staff and my teammates to apologize for them even before the punishment's announcement.
"Now, I want to repeat my apology to the management, technical staff and my teammates," He concluded.
Abou-Treika has been Ahly’s most prominent star since joining the club from Tersana in 2004. He steered the club to seven Egyptian Premier League titles, two Egypt Cup triumphs and 3 African Champions Leagues among other minor accolades.
He has scored 79 league goals for Ahly and finished as the competition’s top scorer in 2006 with 18 goals.
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