Hany Zada, a member of the Zamalek board, spoke to ON Sport...
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VIDEO: 10-man Entag down Zamalek 3-1 on McLeish debut
Despite playing with 10 men for over 45 minutes, Shawky Gharib’s men were able to defeat Zamalek 3-1, with Salah Amin scoring a brace.
This match was the debut of Scottish manager Alex McLeish as Zamalek head coach, after being appointed in February.
The game also witnessed good performance from Entag’s substitute goalkeeper Amer Amer, who was able to deny Zamalek players on more than one occasion.
Zamalek XI: Ahmed El-Shennawy; Mohamed Adel Gomaa, Ali Gabr, Mohamed Koffi, Hazem Emam (66’Shikabala); Tarek Hamed, Marouf Yusuf, Omar Gaber; Ayman Hefny (87′ Mostafa Fathi), Mahmoud Kahraba (73′ Bassem Morsi); Emmanuel Mayuka.
Entag El-Harby XI: Amir Abdel-Hamid (78′ Amer Amer); Ali Fathy, Mahmoud Fathallah, Loay Wael, El-Sayed Farid; Ahmed Magdy, Mohamed Sosta (87′ Mohamed Hassan), Ali Eid, Mohamed Farouk; Salah Amin (95′ Hassan El-Shami), Mohamed Nagy ‘Gedo’.
After a strong start from Shawky Gharib’s men, Salah Amin was able to crown his teammates’ efforts by scoring the first goal in the 16th minute.
Zamalek players needed just ten minutes to get back to square one, as the header of new-boy Mayuka found its way to the back of Amir Abdel-Hamid’s net.
Amin attempted to give the lead back to the military-based club through a corner in the 32nd minute; however, his header went wide.
The last moments of the first half witnessed Loay Wael receive his second yellow card and was sent off the field, for Entag to play the remaining 45 minutes with 10 men.
Despite playing all the second half with 10 men, Shawky Gharib’s men were able to net two other goals.
Ten minutes into the second half, Zamalek’s Kahraba sent a powerful shot towards Amir Abdel-Hamid, yet he was denied by the post. Zamalek continued to miss their chances of scoring a second, as Omar Gaber volleyed the ball but it went over the post.
Mohamed Farouk was close to score for Entag in the 66th minute, but El-Shennawy saved his shot. Zamalek responded through a counter-attack, yet Kahraba was denied again, as his shot went over the post.
Salah Amin’s name was added to the scoresheet in the 70th minute as he calmly placed the ball on El-Shennawy’s right side.
Shikabala, Bassem Morsi and Mostafa Fathi came on in order to boost the offense, yet their combined efforts were not enough to alter the result in Zamalek’s favour.
Former Al Ahly goalkeeper Amir Abdel-Hamid was injured and Amer Amer came on and proved to be a perfect sub, as he cleared a strong shot from Shikabala in the 80th minute.
Amin’s man-of-the-match performance allowed him to win his side a penalty in a critical time after a foul by Mohamed Adel Gomaa. Former Zamalek defender Mahmoud Fathallah successfully converted the penalty, making it 3-1 in the 84th minute.
Ten minutes were awarded as injury time, but it was not enough for a Zamalek comeback. Amer Amer was able to stand his ground and prevented Mostafa Fathi from trying to reduce the deficit in the injury time.
Arch-rivals Al Ahly will benefit the most from this result, as they are now six points clear at the top of the table, followed by Zamalek with 38 points.
Zamalek will face the Arab Contractors, who occupy the 15th place, in the 21st round of the league on Sunday. Fifth-placed Entag will play against Tala’a El-Gaish on Tuesday.