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Dubai – Yasmine El Tohamy – Zamalek vice-captain Hazem Emam has reflected on their Champions League final defeat and talked about the atmosphere in the dressing room.
Al Ahly had defeated Zamalek 2-1 in a historic CAF Champions League final in November to become African champions for the ninth time in their history.
Amr El-Sulya opened the scoring for Al Ahly before Mahmoud Abdel-Razek Shikabala brought the game level after producing a sublime solo effort as Mohamed Magdy Afsha’s late strike sealed the title for the record champions.
A week later, Zamalek crashed out of the Egypt Cup after suffering a surprising 3-1 defeat at the hands of Tala’a El-Gaish in the semi-finals of the competition.
Despite missing out on two trophies last season, Hazem Emam praised Zamalek’s current generation of players and believes his side should have been rewarded for their efforts.
“We have great players and professionals at the highest level, and we deserve to be in a better position than we are in now,” Emam told MBC Masr.
“Everyone watched the Al Ahly and Zamalek game in the African final. We played a big game.
“We managed to equalize after conceding an early goal, and we controlled the game. No one will remember the team that played better, everyone will remember the winner.
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“After the game, there was just complete silence in the dressing room. I left them for about five minutes and spoke with Jaime Pacheco [Zamalek head coach].
“The staff and players were disappointed with the defeat but Shikabala was the most dejected player, especially after scoring a world-class goal.
“Of course, it’s a shame that we couldn’t win the Champions League and it feels bitter with the defeat coming against Al Ahly as well,” he added.
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