Witness- Al-Ahly defeats Raja and Wydad loses in Tanzania.. Did the referee ignore the penalty kick in Cairo?

Al-Ahly of Egypt defeated its Moroccan guest, Raja 2-0, in the first leg of the quarter-finals of the African Football Champions League, on Saturday, while Moroccan Wydad Casablanca, the defending champion, lost 1-0 to its Tanzanian host, Simba.

And while the result was a negative draw, the 39th minute saw Al-Ahly claim a penalty kick in his favor when Marawan Al-Hedhoudi, defender of Raja, bent his head towards the ground to deflect a cross pass from Ali Maaloul, but the ball hit his arm inside his penalty area.

Al-Ahly players gathered around the referee after he indicated the continuation of the game until he contacted the video technology referee after the first stop of the ball, and apparently satisfied himself with his opinion that there was no intentionality in the hand touch, and ignored watching the situation from all angles on the case review screen, deciding not to count it as a penalty kick.

Television replays show that the hand touch was intentional, and a penalty kick is required due to the considerations specified in Article 12 of the Football Law (mistakes and misconduct), which are the distance, the speed of the ball, the movement of the hand, and whether his arm went to the ball or did it go to his arm.

As the cross ball was from a distance of about 25 meters, and the ball was of medium strength; Which means that he could have avoided it easily, as it was close to the ground, and it is not logical for him to go down to play it with his head from this height, putting his arms on the ground indifferently, so that the ball collides with it in a predominantly deliberate manner, as he could have played it with his foot instead.

A few minutes after the stadium owners protested, Mohamed Abdel Moneim opened the scoring for Al-Ahly with a header in the second minute of stoppage time for the first half, to deal a moral blow to Raja, who wasted two chances early on.

Substitute Hamdi Fathi added the second goal 6 minutes before the end to give Al-Ahly, who holds the record with 10 titles, the advantage before the return match in Morocco next Saturday.

And since the big loss 2-5 against Sun Downs in the group stage and its closeness to exiting the tournament, Al-Ahly rose up, and achieved its third victory without conceding a net; To become just around the corner from the semi-finals.

Contrary to what happened in their confrontation in the quarter-finals last year, when Al-Ahly scored two goals in the first 23 minutes, Raja was the better side in the beginning.

Mohamed Nahiri, the Raja player, hit a wonderful free kick, which goalkeeper Mohamed El Shennawy narrowly pushed into a corner after 4 minutes.

Hussein Al-Shahat hit a ball from the edge of the penalty area, which was blocked by Anas Al-Zeniti, the Raja goalkeeper, in Al-Ahly’s first opportunity in the 11th minute.

From a counter-attack, the ball reached Al-Shahat, who fired it, to collide with the defense and reach Al-Zeniti easily.

The Sudanese referee, Mahmoud Ismail, canceled a goal for Al-Ahly, claiming that Mahmoud Abdel-Moneim (Kahraba) had sneaked in the 24th minute.

And Al-Ahly made a mistake by getting the ball out of the defense, and the ball reached Muhammad Zuraida, who exchanged a pass with Walid Sabbar to shoot it, but Al-Shennawi went out to meet him and pushed it to a corner.

Al-Ahly snatched the lead when Maaloul sent a cross pass, which Abdel Moneim, who had remained in the attack after a previous free kick, converted with a header, which Al-Zaniti failed to clear and settled into the net.

Al-Ahly continued to possess the ball in the second half, but without danger to the goal, with Raja closing all outlets to the goal.

The Moroccan team relied on counter-attacks, but its attackers fell offside several times.

And Abdel Moneim almost cost Al-Ahly a lot when he returned a weak pass with a header to Al-Shennawi with the intervention of Hamza Khaba, but the Egyptian goalkeeper saved his colleague in the 70th minute.

South African Percy Tau missed the opportunity to enhance Al-Ahly's superiority when he exchanged passes with Mohamed Hani and hit it towards the goal, but Al-Zaniti pushed it to a corner.

Marawan Attia hit a powerful ball from outside the penalty area, but Al-Zeniti saved it steadily 7 minutes before the end.

Substitute Fathy rewarded his Swiss coach, Marcel Kohler, by scoring the second goal, giving a great advantage to Al-Ahly.

From an attack similar to the goal of winning the Egypt Cup against Pyramids earlier this month, Tao sent a forward pass to Fathy, who took advantage of Raja’s loss of focus, received the ball and fired it powerfully into the Zeniti goal.

Defending champion loses in Tanzania

In a previous match on Saturday, Wydad, the defending champion, lost 1-0 to its host Simba Tanzanian in the first leg.

John Otos scored Simba's goal, taking advantage of a defensive lapse in the 30th minute.

Wydad needs to win by two goals next Friday at home in order to continue the campaign to defend its title.

Wydad was the best party in the first half, and a header from defender Arsene Zola passed next to the post a quarter of an hour after the start.

The winger, Saifuddin Bohra, ran into the penalty area, but the defense pushed his shot away in the 23rd minute.

Simba snatched the lead against the course of the game, as Wydad's defense failed to clear a ball to reach Otos, who fired into the goal.

The referee had to stop the match several minutes before the end of the first half due to rain and heavy fog that impeded vision.

Wydad pressed in the second half, and Simba relied on counterattacks.

Wydad owes credit to its goalkeeper, Youssef Moti`, after saving more than one attempt, including an opportunity from a one-on-one situation in stoppage time.


  • Former international referee

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