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Giant killers Ghazl El Mahalla claim another scalp with defeat of Al Ahly

Ghazl El Mahalla’s return to the Egyptian Premier League this season after four difficult seasons in the second division has been nothing short of a smashing success and their reputation for shaking things up is now at an all-time high following their 1-0 defeat of Egyptian titans Al Ahly on Monday. The win moves the Nile Delta based club into eighth place in the standings and now the club has defeated both of the Cairo giants, having defeated Zamalek on the road earlier this season.

The winning moment for Mahalla came in the 35th minute when a free-kick was tapped over to Ashraf Sayed, who unleashed a picturesque blast that flew into the top corner of keeper Mohamed El Shenawy’s goal. It was an outstanding effort for the underdogs who have built a reputation as a well-organized team that will earn and take advantage of opportunities that come their way. Ahly dominated possession but could not do anything with their added time on the ball due to Mahalla attentively closing down the visitors’ shots and never folding under pressure.

A desperate push forward from Ahly late in second-half stoppage time led to a VAR review for a potential penalty area foul, but the referee was not convinced and Mahalla celebrated wildly following the full-time whistle. It seemed certain that Ahly would overtake rivals Zamalek and move into first place due to having played less matches, but the schedule congestion is clearly taking its toll and represents a great challenge for manager Pitso Mosimane to guide his team out of.

Highlights of the game are below.

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