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Football

Shikabala: The Making of Zamalek’s legend

CAIRO

  • Shikabala eyeing second TotalEnergies CAF Confederation Cup gold medal against RS Berkane
  • The longest serving member of the White Knights who joined the club at the age of 8
  • Milestone 50th career goal on the horizon for the seasoned attacker 

With a second TotalEnergies CAF Confederation Cup title on the horizon for Egyptian giants Zamalek, a lot will be expected of their star players who will be tasked to carry the team in the two-legged final scheduled for 12 and 19 May against two-time champions, RS Berkane of Morocco.

The 2019 champions travel to Morocco to face RS Berkane on Sunday, 12 May in a 19h00 GMT kick off, before the grand final a week later (19 May) in a deciding clash that will ultimately decide on whether they bring a potential five-year continental trophy drought to a halt.

Interestingly, Zamalek’s only TotalEnergies CAF Confederation Cup title came as a result of the Egyptians’ victory over RS Berkane in a nerve-wracking 5-3 penalty shootout victory, following a 1-1 aggregate stalemate.

Five years later, fate has brought the two sides back together in the final of the same competition.

While having the luxury of a star-studded squad in their arsenal, high stakes matches such as a Final of an African club competition requires nerves of steel that only come with years of experience.

One such player that the club will be drawing such expertise from is the ever-green, Mahmoud Abdelrazek Hassan Fadlala – more commonly known to followers of the African game as the great Shikabala.

The legendary attacker who turned 38 in March, is not only adored by his club fans, but has over the years earned the respect of Egyptian and African football thanks to his artistry with the ball for both club and country.

Graduated from the club ranks after joining as an 8-year-old, to becoming one of the club’s most adored footballers to ever grace the number 10 jersey of the 113-year-old club, Shikabala certainly goes down as one of the best to ever don the colours of the White Knights.

Equally exceptional playing on the wings or as a central attacker, the seasoned campaigner brings wealth of experience to coach Jose Gomes’ side that is chasing a seventh continental crown, having lifted the TotalEnergies CAF Champions League five times and one TotalEnergies CAF Confederation Cup title to their name.

In Shikabala, Zamalek boast a serial goal poacher and creator on a good day.

Since his 2002/03 debut, Shikabala has been lethal in front of goal and is just one goal shy of reaching a milestone 50th goal for the Egyptian giants, a feat that could come in a prestigious continental cup final against the same club that they overcame in the 2019 final.

In addition to his 49 club goals, Shikabala has been instrumental in creation of goals with a total of 54 assists since his 2002/03 debut.

Victory in the two-legged final would see the Egyptian star who also represented his nation at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia getting his second TotalEnergies CAF Confederation Cup gold medal after playing a key role in the 2019 triumph over the Moroccans.

Mahmoud Abdelrazek Hassan Fadlala – Shikabala Achievements 

·      X1 TotalEnergies CAF Africa Cup of Nations

·      X1 TotalEnergies CAF Confederation Cup

·      X1 TotalEnergies CAF Super Cup

·      X5 Egyptian Cup

·      X4 Egyptian Premier League

·      X1 Egyptian Super Cup

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