CBE receives 24 bids worth $1.15bn for T-bills tender denominated in US currency    Death toll in Indonesia's Semeru volcano eruption rises to 34, over 100 injured    Startups Without Borders to hold hybrid summit in Rome, Cairo    NTRA raises efficiency of mobile services in Sinai with EGP 513m investment    Economic recovery is essential in countering COVID-19 impact on Africa: Shoukry    Egypt advances to 21st in Climate Change Performance Index 2022    UNFPA, Canada delegation visits projects in Upper Egypt    Egypt, WHO discuss mechanisms to reduce antimicrobial resistance    Plastic Bank collects 150 million bottles in 2021, equivalent to 2,700 tonnes of plastic    US awards film residency programmes to Egyptian filmmakers at CIFF 2021    Irrigation Ministry highlights threats to Egypt's water security before Senate    DP World Sokhna: Integrated supply chain for Egyptian sugar    Egypt's PMI unchanged in Nov as higher inflation expectations weigh on: IHS    Egypt's LNG exports at full capacity of 1.6 bcf/d after gas price rise – minister    Indian Embassy in Cairo presents contemporary dance performances    Egypt explores water cooperation with 4 African countries    Al-Sisi visits Police Academy, witnesses admission exams    Soma Bay hosts Oceanman's Final World Championship 2021 for open-water swimming    Lebanese legend Fairuz is Egypt's most-streamed female singer on Spotify in 2021    Egypt, Qatar discuss cooperation in sports infrastructure    Mortada Mansour sets road map for Zamalek, after normalization committee depart    Egypt's trade with Nile basin countries climbs 26% y-o-y in 9 months    Egypt selected to host COP27 international climate conference in 2022    Number of British tourists to Egypt seen hitting 500,000 this winter – envoy    The unvaccinated prohibited from entry to Egypt state institutions starting December 1    Egypt, Greece ink deal for first subsea power link between Europe and Africa    SCOHRE sparks discussion on harm reduction, tobacco control    Egypt to receive first of six high-trains from Spain's Talgo in mid-November    Egypt's iron and steel exports jump 197% in 8 months    Ethiopia halts work at its embassy in Egypt for 'economic reasons'    It's a bit frustrating to draw at home: Real Madrid keeper after Villarreal game    Russia says it's in sync with US, China, Pakistan on Taliban    Shoukry reviews with Guterres Egypt's efforts to achieve SDGs, promote human rights    Sudan says countries must cooperate on vaccines    Johnson & Johnson: Second shot boosts antibodies and protection against COVID-19    Egypt to tax bloggers, YouTubers    Egypt's FM asserts importance of stability in Libya, holding elections as scheduled    Brazil calls up 8 EPL players for World Cup qualifying    We mustn't lose touch: Muller after Bayern win in Bundesliga    Egypt records 36 new deaths from Covid-19, highest since mid June    Egypt sells $3 bln US-dollar dominated eurobonds    Sisi calls on House, Senate to commence second legislative sessions on 3, 5 October    Gamal Hanafy's ceramic exhibition at Gezira Arts Centre is a must go    Italian Institute Director Davide Scalmani presents activities of the Cairo Institute for ITALIANA.IT platform    Qa'a play showing at Lycee El Horreya Theatre, Alexandria is a must go    APO Group enters new exclusive agreement with Getty Images on African press releases and images    On International Museum Day, Egypt opens two new museums at Cairo Airport    Old Cairo's Al-Fustat will be revamped on Egyptian President's directives    







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Preview: Ahly's unheralded generation out to make history with 2nd CL crown
Published in Ahram Online on 16 - 07 - 2021

Ahly's unsung crop of players might lack the kind of big names who propelled the team to unprecedented glory more than a decade ago but they can make their own history with another Champions League triumph on Saturday.
The Red Devils meet South Africa's Kaizer Chiefs in the final of Africa's blue-riband club competition in Casablanca, targeting a second straight title after they memorably beat Cairo nemesis Zamalek 2-1 in last year's final.
Ahly, the record winners with nine titles under their belt, successfully defended their Champions League crown twice in the last 15 years, with the last time coming in 2013.
Back then, their squad boasted the likes of Mohamed Abou-Treika, who masterminded their 2013 triumph with some virtuoso displays in the twilight of his career, rock-solid defender Wael Gomaa and mercurial midfielder Mohamed Barakat.
The current roster is devoid of such high-profile footballers, with veteran winger Walid Soliman, who will miss the final through injury, the only attacker remaining from the so-called golden generation.
However, they still display the kind of efficient football their fans crave, with their direct play and pragmatic approach of coach Pitso Mosimane, who at times introduces an attractive brand of football and at times adopts cautious strategies, proving very successful.
"We do not have Abou-Treika and Barakat, these are the big names that [Ahly's former iconic boss] Manuel Jose had," Mosimane said last month.
"This generation is different and new, we are currently much smaller than them, every championship we achieve earns us confidence, but there is no comparison with the great golden generation."
Serial winner
The typical down-to-earth Mosimane might be lifting pressure off the shoulders of his players, but he has proven a serial winner since he took the reins in October last year, with Ahly sweeping to a remarkable treble last year and finishing third at the FIFA Club World Cup in February.
He has already become popular with Ahly's ever-demanding fans, who would expect their side to come on top against Kazier Chiefs, who are making their first ever appearance in the final.
The only time Ahly and Kaizer Chiefs met was in 2002 when the Cairo giants secured a comprehensive 4-1 victory in the African Super Cup at home, a game known for a goal then goalkeeper Essam El-Hadary scored from his own half.
Ahly must still be wary of Kaizer Chiefs, who eliminated the likes of Tanzania's Simba and Morocco's Wydad en route to the final, having showed defensive solidity and goal-poaching abilities.
"It's not about fear. It's about the reality and the respect we have to give to the opponent. They played good football in their own way and that helped them go through Wydad and Simba. Those are not small teams," Mosimane told the pre-match news conference.
"They are very strong on counter-attacks, set pieces, crosses and they have a lot of intelligent players.
"We will go to the final in the same way which helped us win last year. The same way that helped us reach the final this year and the same way which helped us win the CAF Super Cup. That's the only way we know."
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