Raja coach blames referee for Zamalek defeat

Ahram Online , Monday 19 Oct 2020

Jamal Sellami
Raja coach Jamal Sellami

Raja coach Jamal Sellami believes his team were undone by costly refereeing errors as they lost 1-0 at home to Zamalek in the first leg of the CAF Champions League semi-final on Sunday.

"The referee made some mistakes; we should have at least been awarded a penalty during the game. The result was unfair, we deserved at least a draw," Sellami told the post-match news conference.

Raja players had several penalty shouts throughout the game, most notably when Soufiane Rahimi fell in the area after coming in contact with Zamalek full back Ahmed Eid in the first half and a second-half handball on defender Mohamed Abdel-Ghani.

But Cameroonian referee Allium Niant turned their appeals down.

"Today there was only one team on the pitch and it was Raja. We made a mistake in the first half but dominated the game. We just weren't focused in front of goal," Sellami added.

"But I can't blame my players and I have to say I am very proud of them and their performance today.

"We missed a lot of players due to injuries and the team suffers from fatigue following the latest run of fixtures. Now we have to recover and there is still another game to play."

Raja were recently crowned Moroccan champions after a breathtaking race with Wydad Casablanca, which was settled on the final day of the season. They will travel to Cairo to play Zamalek in the return leg on Saturday.

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