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PREVIEW: Al Ahly vs Ismaily – Old foes reunite in El-Gouna
Al Ahly are set to square off against Ismaily on Wednesday afternoon at the El-Gouna Stadium, in the 103rd Cairo-Ismailia Derby.
This is the first meeting between both sides since late 2011, a game which Al Ahly were victorious 2-1 en route to their 36th Egyptian Premier League title.
The past six league meetings between both sides has seen two wins for each side, and two draws, with the most notable being the Egyptian Premier League play-off decider in 2008/09 which was sealed courtesy of a Flavio Amado header.
Al Ahly have the upper hand however in the overall meetings between both sides; the Red Devils have won 52 occasions, scoring 151 goals – whilst Ismaily have won 22 games, scoring 88 goals – with both sides sharing the spoils on 28 occasions.
Ismaily are currently on two points due to their six point deduction at the start of the season, and Ricardo Ferreira will be aiming to continue his side’s undefeated start to the season.
Juan Carlos Garrido, on the other hand will be aiming to make it two wins from three. The Red Devils managed to comprehensively defeat Ittihad El-Shorta 3-0 on Saturday, thus putting their 2-1 defeat to Al-Ragaa behind them.
D D W W
Al Ahly form:
L W – –
The Dervishes, however, are facing several injury issues heading into Wednesday’s game. Star defender Ahmed El-Esh suffered a head injury in a friendly game against Al Masry, whilst Mahmoud Abdelaziz also picked up a knock in the game.
It’s all smiles for Al Ahly though, having retained the services of Sherif Ekramy and Mohamed Rizk, who missed the game against Shorta due to injury; whilst Bassem Ali is still serving his suspension.
STAT ATTACK: Powered by TalataBont
Ismaily have scored 8 goals in 4 games, and conceded 6, whilst Al Ahly have scored 4 in 2 games and conceded 3. Both teams are scoring twice a game and conceding 1.5 a game on average.
Yet, a deeper look at where they concede their shots (using expected goals) shows two very different teams.
Al-Ahly have looked great in attack (second highest Expected Goals/Game) and most Shots/Game while Ismaily have looked mediocre, only getting of 12.8 shots a game and 10th best attack
The Red Devils however have been poor at the back, conceding an average of 12 shots, and 1.01 goals per game against Ittihad El-Shorta and Al-Ragaa.
Ismaily though have been impressive defensively, conceding a lot of shots yet limiting their danger to 0.9 expected goals against/game.
THE ULTIMATE BATTLE
Two players who are undoubtedly expected to impact the game on Wednesday are Amr Gamal and John Antwi: the top scorers of the 2013/2014 Egyptian Premier League season have had great starts to the season thus far, and show no signs of stopping. Who will emerge victorious in the battle of the strikers?
AWALK DOWN MEMORY LANE
Al Ahly 4-4 Ismaily
In what is commonly labelled as the “greatest Egyptian game of all time”, Al Ahly and Ismaily played out one of the most thrilling encounters ever witnessed in Egypt’s history.