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VIDEO: Zamalek down Al Ahly to win fourth straight Egypt Cup title
Zamalek XI: Ahmed El-Shennawy; Shawky El-Said, Ali Gabr, Islam Gamal, Ali Fathi; Tarek Hamed, Ahmed Tawfik, Moruf Yusuf; Ayman Hefny, Shikabala; Bassem Morsy.
Al Ahly XI: Ahmed Adel; Sabry Raheel, Saad Samir, Ramy Rabia, Ahmed Fathi; Hossam Ashour, Hossam Ghaly, Momen Zakaria, Walid Soliman, Abdallah El-Said; Amr Gamal.
Zamalek controlled the possession in the early minutes of the game, but Ayman Hefny and Bassem Morsy failed to capitalise on opportunities to score an early goal.
The game was paused for around three minutes after Morsy was booked for elbowing Saad Samir, who received treatment on the pitch.
Al Ahly started to gain control after the resumption of the match. Fifteen minutes into the game, Sabry Rahil sent a cross inside the box and Amr Gamal launched himself into the air for an attempted bicycle-kick but missed the ball.
At the 20-minute mark, Zamalek broke the deadlock. Shikabala sent a brilliant through ball inside the box as Morsy pounced and flicked the ball into the net.
Four minutes later, the referee awarded Zamalek a penalty after Saad Samir tripped Shikabala inside the box, and Morsy scored from the spot to complete his brace.
Eight minutes after Zamalek’s second goal, Islam Gamal pulled Amr Gamal inside the box as the referee awarded Al Ahly a penalty. Abdallah El-Said converted the penalty for his side to reduce the deficit.
After the goal, Al Ahly controlled the possession and threatened Zamalek’s goal on several occasions.
During the added time, Al Ahly had a chance to level the score through a fast counter-attack, but Walid Soliman’s curler missed the target as the first half ended 2-1 in favour of Zamalek.
Al Ahly were close to equalise at the beginning of the second half as Momen’s volley hit the bar following a free-kick from Abdallah El-Said. The Red Devils continued to threaten Zamalek as Walid Soliman sent a brilliant cross but Amr Gamal failed to connect with his header.
Despite Al Ahly’s control, Zamalek managed to add their third goal around the one-hour mark. Morsy chipped the ball in the box, before Mostafa Fathi beautifully dribbled past Al Ahly’s two center backs and sent the ball over the keeper.
At the 68th minute, Mido Gaber came on for his debut to replace Hossam Ashour. This marked Al Ahly’s third substitution after Emad Metab replaced Amr Gamal and Marwan Mohsen came on instead of Walid Soliman.
Despite the two-goal deficit, Al Ahly remained hopeful and tried to make a comeback but El-Said’s attempts were saved by El-Shennawy.
Eight minutes to full time, Al Ahly captain Hossam Ghaly was sent off after receiving his second yellow card following a collision with Morsy.
Four minutes later, Ramy Rabia missed a chance to make it 3-2 as his curler narrowly missed the target. In the dying minutes of the game, Mido Gaber was close to score on his debut as he curled a free-kick on target but El-Shennawy acrobatically sent it over for a corner.
Another red card only served to rub salt into Al Ahly’s wounds as the league champions were reduced to nine men after Ahmed Fathi was sent off for receiving a second yellow card for a handball in the 90th minute.
The referee blew his final whistle as Zamalek sealed their fourth consecutive Egypt Cup title following a 3-1 victory over Al Ahly.