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Reprieve for Mosimane as AL Ahly reach Egypt cup quarters finals

Reprieve for Mosimane as AL Ahly reach Egypt cup quarters finals

A 74th-minute goal from substitute Salah Mohsen lifted holders Ahly to the Egypt Cup quarter-final following a 1-0 victory over Enppi on Saturday to give under-fire coach Pitso Mosimane a reprieve. 

Widespread reports suggested that the South African coach could be dismissed if Ahly exited Egypt’s secondary club competition but the Red Devils produced a convincing performance to overwhelm Enppi.

Mosimane came in for fierce criticism after Ahly were pipped by perennial Cairo rivals Ahly to the Premier League title last season before suffering a stunning shootout loss to unfancied Talae El-Geish in the Egyptian Super Cup last Tuesday.

Although Mosimane led Ahly to back-to-back African Champions League titles, the team’s demanding fans were unlikely to let him off the hook if the Cairo giants stumbled again.

The Egypt Cup is the 57-year-old’s last chance for domestic silverware before the new season gets underway.

Despite Ahly’s territorial dominance, Enppi created the first-half’s best chance when Ibrahim Galal sprang the offside trap to break clear on 31 minutes, only to dither on the ball and allow left-back Ayman Ashraf to deny him with a sliding tackle.

Ahly then wasted two chances to go ahead before halftime, playmaker Magdi Afsha hitting the side netting after an inswinging cross from Ali Maaloul found him unmarked at the far post and striker Mohamed Sherif heading wide with the goal at his mercy following another inviting ball from the Tunisian left-back.

The second-half introduction of Mozambican winger Luis Miquissone, who joined in the summer, and Mohsen injected much-needed zeal as Ahly poured forward en masse.

Miquissone spurned a goal-scoring chance but had a hand in Mohsen’s opener as Ahly broke the deadlock on 74 minutes.

A fine three-man move saw Miquissone feed Afsha on the edge of the area, with the schemer’s first-time pass releasing Mohsen to toe-poke the ball past the advancing keeper with aplomb.

Ahly will meet Pyramids FC in the last eight after the latter beat Alexandria-based club Smouha 3-1 on Friday.

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