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Al Ahly and Zamalek each win 2-1 leading into upcoming Cairo Derby clash

All three members of the Egyptian Premier League top-3 were in action on Thursday and all found success with victories. Al Ahly travelled to Alexandria and came out with a polished performance in their 1-2 win against Al Ittihad. Ahly dominated the first half and even though a goal did not come in the opening period, the stage was set for an excellent start to the second half. Moroccan international defender Badr Banoun converted a penalty kick in the 50th minute and then Mohamed Magdy “Afsha” was on hand five minutes later to head in a precision cross from Hussein El Shahat to put Ahly beyond reach.

Every goal in Zamalek’s 2-1 win over Smouha came in the first half and the hosts certainly had to work for their three points against Smouha. Zamalek captain Shikabala put in an excellent diagonal cross to find on-fire forward Achraf Bencharki, who headed home his tenth league goal of the season in the 17th minute. An instant response came from the visitors only minutes later when former Zamalek player Mostafa Fathi side-footed a composed finish from the edge of the box. Tarek Hamed provided the winner in the 42nd minute with an excellent strike that left Smouha keeper El-Hany Soliman rooted to the spot.

It appeared Pyramids FC were headed for disaster when veteran Abdalla Bekhit’s penalty kick was saved soon after halftime, but the visitors prevailed 1-3 over Wadi Degla despite conceding a penalty kick goal right after Bekhit’s miss. Ahmed Samy, Ibrahim Adel and Islam Issa all scored within a ten minute span to help the big spenders storm back to win.

Zamalek are still four points ahead in the Egyptian Premier League standings with two more games played than second-placed Al Ahly. Pyramids are lurking ten points behind with improved form suggesting they are capable of putting more pressure on the top-2. Highlights from all three games are below.

Al Ittihad Alexandria 1-2 Al Ahly

Zamalek 2-1 Smouha

Wadi Degla 1-3 Pyramids FC

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