In a match that saw numerous opportunities for both teams, Al Ahly and National Bank of Egypt played out a 0-0 draw on Wednesday. With the teams having drawn in four of their five meetings over the past year and a half it was little surprise that National Bank of Egypt once again gave the African champions problems, and the result could have been worse for Ahly if it was not for a couple of excellent saves by goalkeeper Mohamed El Shenawy who was forced off with injury near the hour mark.
El Shenawy was called into action immediately in the opening three minutes and had to be sharp to deny a NBE attacking movement in the opening minute. Ahly had their first good look on the hosts’ goal just after ten minutes when forward Mohamed Sherif snuck by a defender and put his shot just wide from 18 yards.
It appeared Ahly had taken the lead when playmaker Afsha provided a perfect ball to pick out an attacking run from left back Mahmoud Wahid but after Wahid put the ball in the net, it was judged by the Video Assistant Referee that the ball was still moving when Ahly took a quick free kick restart earlier in the movement. Ahly dominated the middle third of the match but were unlucky to not take the lead, Sherif squandering another excellent look from close range just shy of 49 minutes.
NBE earned a few excellent looks on goal of their own before the hour mark was up as Karim Bambo’s half volley veered wide with the Ahly goal begging soon before the 60 minute mark. The last thirty minutes saw both teams cancel each other out further and despite a late push, Ahly could not find the winner in the last stretch with Afsha firing wide in the first minute of second half stoppage time.
Ahly remain seven points behind league leaders Zamalek with four matches still to make up. Extended highlights are below.