VIDEO: Zamalek defeat Dakhleya for best league start since 2003

Hatem Maher, Wednesday 13 Feb 2013

Substitute Hazem Emam scores in the second half to give Zamalek their third consecutive Egyptian Premier League win

Zamalek's Ibraim Salah (Photo: Bassam Al-Zoghby)

Pacy winger Hazem Emam came on as a second-half substitute to help Zamalek claim a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Dakhleya on Wednesday as the Cairo side made their best Egyptian Premier League start since 2003.

Zamalek garnered maximum nine points from their first three league games for the first time since they last won the title in the 2003-04 season.

The success-starved side made light of a controversial red card to in-form forward Mohamed Ibrahim in the first half to cruise past Dakhleya, who also played with ten men after Saleh Moussa was sent off in the same incident.

Both players were involved in an altercation but Ibrahim seemed unlucky to receive a straight red card, given that he was head-butted by Moussa following an angry exchange of words.

Zamalek top Group B with nine points, three ahead of second-placed Ismaily who have a game in hand.

In a new two-group league format, the winners of the two groups will advance to play a mini-league with only home fixtures to determine the champion. The competition is being played behind closed doors at military-owned stadiums due to security concerns.

Ibrahim made some darting runs down the flanks early on but Zamalek failed to threaten Dakhleya in a dull first-half, which burst into life in the 28th minute when the visitors wasted a clear-cut chance to stun Zamalek.

A swift counter attack saw Mohamed Samara break clear but his low shot went wide of the post.

Ibrahim and Moussa were sent off ten minutes later following their altercation. Ibrahim shouted at Moussa after being fouled but the latter head-butted him in response.

The referee immediately red-carded both players, infuriating Ibrahim and his teammates who believed he was harshly dismissed.
 Zamalek controlled possession after the break but barely created clear-cut opportunities.

Emam, who is often criticised for failing to live up to his potential, came to their rescue in the 76th minute when he ran onto a superb long pass from midfielder Ibrahim Salah to go clear and place his shot beyond advancing keeper Ahmed Fawzi from an acute angle.

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Zamalek 1-0 Dakhleya


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