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VIDEO: Sundowns reach semi-final as own goal downs Zamalek



booked their spot in the semi-finals after beating Zamalek 1-0 courtesy of an own goal from Ali Gabr.

The hosts controlled the game early on, while Zamalek struggled to gain possession. Sundowns’ had their first real chance after eight minutes but the shot of Colombian striker Leonardo Castro went over the bar.

Twenty minutes into the game, Zamalek new signing Ali Fathi posed a threat to Sundowns as he dribbled past the hosts’ defense but his cross was caught by the keeper.

Zamalek keeper Ahmed El-Shennawy denied Sundowns in the 34th minute with a fingertip save, converting Billiat’s cross to a corner. The first half ended goalless, thanks to Shennawy who saved another cross from Billiat.

The first real chance after the break came around the one-hour mark, as Tebogo Langerman sent a shot from the edge of the box but the ball went inches away from the post.

Ten minutes later, Ibrahim Abdel-Khalik sprinted into Sundowns’ penalty box but the Sundowns keeper blocked the ball before it reached Morsy. In the 76th, Shennawy maintained the score at 0-0 as he saved Zwane’s long-range strike.

After Sundowns’ strikers were denied several times by Shennawy, Zamalek’s Ali Gabr scored an own goal to give the hosts the lead as he diverted Percy Tau’s cross into his own net 11 minutes from time.

Two minutes to full time, Zamalek were awarded a free-kick but Ali Fathi’s shot missed the target as the game ended in a 1-0 victory for Sundowns.

The victory put the South African side top of Group B on 9 points, while Zamalek remained on three points in second place. The Egyptian side can book a semi-final spot with a draw in their final group game against Enyimba of Nigeria, who sit at the bottom of the group on zero points.

Editor-in-Chief at Pursuing a master's degree in sport policy, management and international development at the University of Edinburgh.

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