LIVE: Al Ahly v Zamalek | CAF Champions League Final

LIVE: Al Ahly v Zamalek | CAF Champions League Final

21:00 Cairo Local Time | 14:00 ET Canada-USA
Venue: Cairo Stadium (2000 Fans Allowed by invitation only )
CAF Champions League Final
Referee: Algerian referee Mustapha Ghorbal

Cairo rivals Al Ahly and Zamalek of Cairo clash for Africa’s top prize on Friday, with a Champions League trophy that both crave so much at stake in the first-ever final to feature 2 teams from the same country.

It is an all-Egypt affair in the CAF Champions League final as Al Ahly take on Zamalek. Al Ahly are the most successful side in the competition’s history having claimed the title on eight occasions but they will hope to make it third time lucky having lost their last two finals in 2017 and 2018.

Zamalek are the second most successful side having won it five times but their last success was all the way back in 2002. Both teams are in great form ahead of this final with Al Ahly unbeaten in their last 17 while it is ten without defeat for Zamalek. That sets up what should be an intriguing contest with both teams likely to throw plenty forward and with it being rare for either side to fail to find the back of the net, there should be goals at either end.

The showpiece, however, faces being overshadowed by COVID-19 infections with three Al Ahly possibly missing out, including veteran playmaker Walid Soliman. Zamalek will be without key defender Mahmoud El-Wensh.

Al Ahly employed South African coach Pitso Mosimane just under two months ago and he has continued their domestic dominance.

They reached the final with a convincing 5-1 aggregate semi-final victory over Morocco’s Wydad Casablanca and won the Egyptian Premier League comfortably with a runaway 21-point lead over second-placed Zamalek.

Mosimane won the Champions League with Pretoria club Mamelodi Sundowns four years ago when they easily beat Zamalek over two legs in the final.

Zamalek have veteran Portuguese coach Jaime Pacheco at the helm. He was hired days before Mosimane joined Al Ahly and is the 20th coaching appointment in the last five years made by Zamalek’s chairman Mortada Mansour.

The history of head-to-head clashes favors the Red Devils

Ahly and Zamalek first met in the Champions League in the semi-final of the 2005 edition when Al-Ahly claimed a 2-1 victory in the first leg with two goals from Emad Met’eb and Mohamed Barakat while Zamalek’s goal was scored by Hazem Emam. Al-Ahly then defeated Zamalek 2-0 in the return leg with a brace from Mohamed Barakat.

The two teams faced-off again in the quarter-final group stage of the 2008 tournament when Al-Ahly secured a 2-1 win in the first round while their second encounter in the fifth round ended in a 2-2 draw.

The same scenario was repeated when the Red Devils clashed with the White knights in the group stage in 2012 with Ahly’s legend Mouhamed Aboutrika leading his team to a 1-0 victory in the second round before the two teams tied 1-1 in the sixth round.

The last African encounter between the two sides took place when the quarter-final draw in 2013 placed both of them in the same group once again. The first game ended in a 1-1 draw while Al-Ahly managed to crush Zamalek with 4 goals and claim a landslide victory in the second encounter.

LIVE: Al Ahly v Zamalek | CAF Champions League Final

21:00 Cairo Local Time | 14:00 ET Canada-USA

FT Al Ahly 2-1 Zamalek

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