27 December 2019 13:27
Cape Town - Mamelodi Sundowns massacred Egyptian giants Al Ahly 5-0 in Saturday's CAF Champions League quarter-final at the Lucas Masterpieces Moripe Stadium in Pretoria. 'Downs took control from the start and were 1-0 ahead in the 13th minute. Tebogo Langerman raced clear down the left-hand side and his cross found Themba Zwane who tapped home. It was one-way traffic and the Club of the Century were at sixes and sevens all over the park. It became 2-0 in the 23rd minute as Gaston Sirino's superb free kick was knocked home from close range by Wayne Arendse.
Al Ahly were getting battered and it was nearly 3-0 not long afterwards as Themba Zwane and the tireless Hlompho Kekana hit the woodwork. In the second stanza it was more of the same and when goalkeeper Mohamed El-Shenawy tripped Lebohang Maboe in the area, Ricardo Nascimento stepped up to convert the penalty with expert precision. The onslaught continued and the excellent Sirino would soon make it four from Langerman's assist. Near the penalty spot he showed brilliant quick feet before rifling home into the right-hand corner of the net beyond a helpless El-Shenawy. Former Ahly forward Phakamani Mahlambi got some revenge against his former employers as he got the icing on the cake in the 83rd minute.
He said the games in the Champions League‚ such as in North Africa – where Downs' top scorer in all competitions started against 2017 champions Wydad Casablanca in Rabat‚ Morocco in a 1-0 defeat in the group stage – have been his highlights of his first season in Pretoria. "I feel like I've had a pretty decent season in my first year at a new club‚ joining new players‚ and knowing no-one here‚" the 24-year-old Bafana Bafana international said. "It's been a very good season for me. I'm enjoying it. "The highlights were things like going and playing against Wydad.
Playing those games – the Caf games. Getting a different feeling from what you get at home. "Everything is different there. The buildings are different. Getting to travel all these long hours. Spending a day on the road‚ sometimes. Those are the highlights of my first season." Maboe said daily conversations with dad Sidwell help keep him humble. "He's really happy seeing me doing well. We talk almost every day. He tells me what I've done right and what I shouldn't do. "He plays a very important role in my life‚ too‚ helping keep me grounded." The gifted attacker said being mentioned for PSL Player of the Season is "an overwhelming feeling". "It's my first season joining a new club‚ and‚ you know‚ having to work like I have been working on and off the field‚ I really can't put it much into words‚ but it's overwhelming." Downs will hope to establish a healthy lead in Atteridgeville to take to the second leg in Alexandria next Saturday. That will be no easy feat against a team with the pedigree and organisational qualities of Cairo's Red Devils. Maboe said not conceding a goal at home‚ which count double for Ahly in the case of the scores in the tie finishing level‚ was also crucial. "It's very important. Because going there [to Egypt] is a totally different ball game‚" he said. "There are a lot of external factors that come into play playing away. So it's very important to win at home and not concede." Egypt's FA competitions committee fined both Al Ahly and Ittihad of Alexandria in addition to banning Entag El-Harby manager Mokhtar Mokhtar. Both Al Ahly and Ittihad of Alexandria received an EGP 40,000 fine due to both their fans' misconduct after the end of the game. In addition, Ittihad's Khaled Kamar and El-Hany Soliman, as well as Al Ahly's Geraldo and Ali Maaloul all, received a one-match ban after exceeding the number of bookings allowed. VIDEO: Al Ahly snatch dramatic victory over Ittihad As for Entag El-Harby manager, Mokhtar Mokhtar received a one-game ban in addition to an EGP 5,000 fine after he attacked the referees following his side's 1-0 loss to ENPPI. Entag El-Harby board member Mohamed Taamiya is also banned for four games for attacking the referee. Finally, the team's physiotherapist Magdy El-Shenbaky received an eight-match ban for entering the pitch unauthorized and insulting the referee. Phakamani Mahlambi will celebrate if he nets against Al Ahly Posted: 6 April 2019 Time: 12:00 Print this article Phakamani Mahlambi says he will celebrate if he scores against his former club Al Ahly this afternoon. READ: Maboe: Biggest game of my career The Mamelodi Sundowns forward will be hoping to get an opportunity to play when the defending Absa Premiership champions host the Egyptians in the CAF Champions League first leg quarterfinal at Lucas Moripe Stadium. Mahlambi spent just one season with Ahly and it was not a great stay for him, which saw him coming back to the PSL to start afresh. Mahlambi celebrated when he scored against his former side Bidvest Wits at Bidvest Stadium in February, so he would do the same this afternoon if he were to get on the scoresheet. The 21-year-old is yet to score in the Champions League, so he's got a chance to bag his first one against a club that did not give him much of a chance to showcase his talent. "Yes, I will celebrate. For me to score against them will be a bonus, but the most important thing is to help the team win the game and then go to the semifinals. Mahlambi says he will not be motivated by revenge when he takes on the Red Devils this afternoon. "Everything went well that side [in Egypt] and I think it was a time for me to come back to South Africa and start again. For me to play against them, it's going to be a great pleasure to prove myself. It's not like I want to pay revenge and stuff like that, no. But it's about me playing the game and winning and qualifying for the semifinals. It's like any other game because they are our opponents," the national under-23 player says. "We need to give them respect, but not too much respect. We need to focus on ourselves and hopefully we will give them the result we are looking for." Article by: Staff Reporter Al Ahly will face their Cairo rivals Zamalek on Saturday Only thirty fans will be given access to the weekend's Cairo derby between Al Ahly and Zamalek. The biggest game in the country's league could see Ahly overhaul their city rivals at the top of the table. But continuing security restrictions mean the 86,000 capacity Borg-al-Arab stadium will be almost empty for the high profile clash. 15 fans from either team will be allowed into the game, according to Egypt's Football Association (EFA). "After meeting with security, we can announce that only 30 people will attend the match between Ahly and Zamalek, with 15 persons for each team", Amer Hussien, the chairman of the EFA's competitions committee said on Thursday. There have been limits on fans attending matches in Egypt ever since the tragic riot in Port Said which killed more than 70 people attending a game between Al Masry and Al Ahly in 2012. The restrictions on domestic matches are in contrast to continental club games and international fixtures, where tens of thousands of supporters are routinely allowed. There have been periodic attempts since then to ease restrictions, but authorities are keen to limit fans on Saturday in the match between Ahly and Zamalek because of how big the fan base of the two clubs is. Zamalek are top of the Egyptian league with 53 points from 22 matches, while Al Ahly are second, two points adrift with 11 rounds of games still to be played.