Sad night for Al Ahly in Rades af­ter los­ing African ti­tle

Ashour, Walid Soli­man are most af­fected... Fines im­posed on play­ers

The Daily News Egypt - - Front Page - By Alaa Mustafa

Al Ahly SC fans had a solemn night on Fri­day af­ter the heavy loss to EST by three clean goals, re­sult­ing in los­ing the African ti­tle for the sec­ond year in a row, es­pe­cially that this came as a sur­prise af­ter win­ning the first round by 3-1, and get­ting very close to win­ning the ninth ti­tle.

The play­ers were in a state of deep sadness fol­low­ing the end of the match, and some of them were hys­ter­i­cally cry­ing in the dress­ing room at the Rades sta­dium, where the team had pre­vi­ously cel­e­brated the cham­pi­ons ti­tle in 2006 against CS Sfax­ien, and the sec­ond time in 2012 against EST. How­ever, this time the sit­u­a­tion was com­pletely dif­fer­ent.

Mo­hamed Youssef, the gen­eral coach and act­ing foot­ball di­rec­tor, im­posed a ma­jor fine on play­ers, and not just due to the loss, but also since the per­for­mance was dis­ap­point­ing.

The team’s tech­ni­cal di­rec­tor, French Pa­trice Carteron, lived some ex­cep­tional mo­ments him­self fol­low­ing the dream to win the sec­ond ti­tle af­ter win­ning the cham­pi­onship in 2015 against TP Mazembe, which made him an­gry and dis­ap­pointed, which was ob­vi­ous to all af­ter the match.

Carteron’s anger in­ten­si­fied, when the Con­fed­er­a­tion of African Foot­ball (CAF) ac­cused him of be­ing an ac­com­plice in the in­ci­dent of Moroc­can Azaro tear­ing off his shirt at the first-leg match, which are all neg­a­tive sit­u­a­tions that Carteron had to go through over the past few hours.

The play­ers who were most af­fected by the loss in Al Ahly were Hos­sam As hour, the team’s cap­tain, and W ale ed Soli­man, the team’s star in the cur­rent sea­son, as both hys­ter­i­cal cried once they lost the African dream.

Loss is first nail in Carteron’s cof­fin

Mah­moud El Khatib, the chair­per­son of Al Ahly club, is pre­par­ing to lead a cor­rec­tive revo­lu­tion for the team af­ter the loss on Fri­day against EST.

El Khatib is hold­ing a spe­cial ses­sion with the tech­ni­cal staff led by Pa­trice Carteron, in the pres­ence of Ab­del Aziz Ab­del Shafy, the sports di­rec­tor and mem­ber of the foot­ball com­mit­tee, in ad­di­tion to AlaaAb­del Sadek and Hos­sam Ghaly, mem­bers of the com­mit­tee, as well as Mo­hamed Youssef, the gen­eral coach and act­ing man­ager of foot­ball, in or­der to dis­cuss the rea­sons for the loss, even though the team won the first-leg round in Borg El Arab sta­dium by 3-1, how­ever, the team’s per­for­mance in Rades was shock­ing.

The sure thing is that los­ing the African ti­tle was putting the first nail in Carteron’s cof­fin with Al-Ahly, es­pe­cially that the team did not per­form at its best even though they man­aged to reach the fi­nal.

Carteron raised wide con­tro­versy af­ter his ab­sence from the press con­fer­ence that fol­lowed the match, which raised ru­mours about his res­ig­na­tion, how­ever, Mo­hamed Youssef de­nied that.

This loss is also the fi­nal nail in the cof­fin of many other play­ers in Al Ahly, such as Mido Gaber and Islam Mo­hareb. Even though they had the full chance over the past pe­riod, they did not man­age to en­tirely take ad­van­tage of it.

For his part, El Khatib seemed an­gry about the loss for the sec­ond time, and is he is ex­pected to in­ter­vene to read­just the track af­ter his pa­tience with the tech­ni­cal staff in the con­ti­nen­tal matches.

In the same con­text, the foot­ball com­mit­tee in Al Ahly is pre­par­ing to hold new deals in Jan­uary dur­ing the win­ter trans­fers pe­riod, to sup­port the team which turned out to be in need of con­tract­ing with more than one player.

Apart from tech­ni­cal mat­ters, Al Ahly has filed an official com­plaint to the CAF af­ter the events the team was sub­jected to by EST fans, caus­ing a head in­jury for mid­fielder Hisham Mo­hamed.

Al Ahly is ex­pected to re­spond over the next few days to the vi­o­la­tions against the club, es­pe­cially that there is a state of anger, which CAF used against the club, rep­re­sented in sus­pend­ing Moroc­can Waleed Azaro, the team’s at­tacker, and ac­cus­ing Carteron of be­ing com­plicit with Azaro in an official state­ment.

All of this trig­gered an over­all state of dis­con­tent in the team whose of­fi­cials feel they are deal­ing with all th­ese chal­lenges alone, with­out sup­port from the Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion and its Pres­i­dent HaniAbo Reda, as well as the FIFA, un­like the pos­i­tive role played by the Tu­nisian Foot­ball Fed­er­a­tion with EST over the past few days since the end of the first-leg match in Borg El Arab and its suc­cess in pres­sur­ing CAF to sus­pend Azaro.

The past few hours have seen in­tense con­tact be­tween Mah­moud El Khatib andAbo Reda, with great blame from Al Ahly’s side who was taking part in the cham­pi­onship, car­ry­ing Egypt’s name, all of it caused ten­sion with the Egyp­tian Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion.

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