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Egyptian Premier League

Zamalek league title hopes continue to fade after dropping more points

failed to win their second successive league match. This time drawing again strugglers, Ragaa.

18th placed hosted 5th placed Zamalek in an intense match that ended in a draw on the 12th week of the Egyptian League.

The guests started the game with a surprisingly new 4-3-2-1 formation. This changed their usual tactics by concentrating their chance creation from the middle of the park instead of widening up the field from the flanks.

On the other hand, Al Ragaa started with an inverted 4-3-3 with two holding midfielders and a box-to-box midfielder up top which was very pragmatic, from Emad El Nahas, to ensure a stable defensive line.

17 minutes after an opening midfield battle, Al Ragga were able to score through, former Zamalek player, Saleh Moussa. He converted​ a free-kick from the left side of the box with an easy header after El-Shenawy’s late jump.

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The White Knights weren’t looking so sharp with their new formation as they only had one shot on target. They also looked shaky at the back as they were lucky not to concede the second on multiple occasions.

Zamalek then approached the second half with a completely different mentality. Nebojša decided to replace their highest scoring player this season, with five goals, Mohamed Ashraf Roua’a, with Mohamed Ibrahim to switch their formation once again to a 4-2-2-2. Hefny and Ibrahim played as attacking midfielders.

The visitors were then able to have their first real chance of the match. This came through a header from Basem Morsi which was diverted for a corner in the 47th minute.

Zamalek made further changes; bringing on Abdallah Gomaa and Kassongo to replace Hefny and Qamar.

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They kept pushing for an equalizer to save their title, hopes this season and were finally able to score in the 72nd minute. Kassongo received an incredible no-look cross from Morsi and he headed past the Al Ragaa goalkeeper.

The white Knights were trying as hard as they could to take the lead in the last 15 minutes of the game by playing in crosses for the strikers but were unlucky in the final third.

Unfortunately for the White Knights, they dropped more points in the , this season, in settling for a draw.

Zamalek’s next game will be against Haras El-Hodoud in the round of 16 in the Egyptian Cup on Thursday 17, December 2017.

Reporter at KingFut and a Broadcast Journalism senior at Misr International University.

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