Pitso reaches another cup final in Egypt

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An Al Ahly banner celebrating coach Pitso Mosimane Picture: Al Ahly Twitter
An Al Ahly banner celebrating coach Pitso Mosimane Picture: Al Ahly Twitter

SPORT


Pitso Mosimane is in line to claim a second treble with a different club in a matter of a few months. On Tuesday, the 56-year-old Al Ahly head coach reached his second cup final, the Egyptian Cup, two months into a new job and a few days after he had guided the Cairo powerhouse to the CAF Champions League triumph over city rivals Zamalek in Cairo last Friday.

Al Ahly beat Al-Ittihad 2-1 away on Tuesday to set a date in the Egyptian Cup on Saturday with Tala’ea El Gaish, who shocked Zamalek 3-1 in the other semifinal.

Mosimane’s exploits in Egypt since he took over as Al Ahly coach last month come after the former Mamelodi Sundowns coach delivered the Premiership title, as well as the Nedbank Cup and Telkom Knockout trophies in Chloorkop, Gauteng.

Read: Pitso’s win a coup for South Africa

He arrived in Cairo when Al Ahly were left with three league matches and the Red Devils had already won the league with seven games to spare under his predecessor René Weiler.

However, history will remember Mosimane as the man who was in charge when Al Ahly were officially crowned the Egyptian champions for the 42nd time last month.

When he landed the Champions League title last Friday, he inherited a team that was already in the semifinals, as well as at the quarterfinal stage in the domestic cup.

Interestingly, Al Ahly eliminated Sundowns in the last eight of the CAF competition.

Nonetheless, Mosimane has drawn praise from in and around the continent, including Weiler, who conveyed his compliments to his counterpart on Instagram with messages such as “my champion”, while the Swiss tactician also wished the Kagiso, Gauteng-born coach success in the Fifa Club World Cup.

With his feat in the Champions League last Friday, Mosimane earned the Red Devils a spot at the global club tournament, which will be held in Doha, Qatar, in February.

Also, the CAF triumph elevated him to being just the third coach in the premier African club competition’s history to lift the title with two different clubs, having also won it with Sundowns in 2016.

Mosimane with Al Ahly is now more famous than [Pep] Guardiola,” Al Ahly board member Mohsen Saleh tweeted on Monday, as he drew comparisons with the Manchester City coach.

Mosimane’s name is etched in the African club football history books alongside that of Argentine Oscar Fulloné who won the Champions League with Ivory Coast powerhouse Asec Mimosas in 1998 and the following year with Raja Casablanca of Morocco.

Read: Podcast | How did Moira Tlhagale pull off the biggest coach transfer in South African football history?

Egypt’s Mahmoud El Gohary also won it with Ahly in 1982 and Zamalek in 1993.

“Mosimane with Al Ahly is now more famous than [Pep] Guardiola,” Al Ahly board member Mohsen Saleh tweeted on Monday, as he drew comparisons with the Manchester City coach.

“Whoever coaches Al Ahly should consider themselves very lucky. All the circumstances allow you to succeed, the fans, the boards, the spotlight and even the money. To actually prove yourself, you need to show it at another club,” said Saleh in a post translated from Arabic.


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Daniel Mothowagae 

Deputy sports editor

+27 11 713 9001
Daniel.Mothowagae@citypress.co.za
www.citypress.co.za
69 Kingsway Rd, Auckland Park

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