» I am very happy to return to my home “, declared the Portuguese technical director Jesualdo Ferreira on his Instagram account, a few hours after his appointment as new coach of Zamalek, Friday, March 4. » My ambitions are boundless and I hope to make the dreams of the team supporters come true. « . Indeed, the appointment of the Portuguese as the team’s new coach was well received by all the team’s supporters who saw that Ferreira is the only one capable of raising the bar of the team and saving it from its current crisis. .
Following the departure of Frenchman Patrice Carteron last week, for lack of good results, many voices were raised within the white citadel demanding the return of Ferreira who led the team in 2015 for the domestic double. It was a first in the history of the club since 1988. Since the time factor was not in favor of the team, which is full commitment, either in the championship or in the African Champions League, the he administration of the club did not have the luxury of choosing the team’s new technical director easily. She needed to recruit a coach who has a good knowledge of Egyptian and African football, especially as the team is in full season.
Likewise, this coach must have a strong personality capable of finding calm in the team’s locker room, given the ambiguous fate of several stars of the team who have not so far renewed their contracts. The Portuguese meets all these requirements, plus his great technical abilities which have earned him the name of professor in his country. » I owe a lot to Ferreira “, said Tareq Hamed, the middle of the team once. » He was the one who taught me how to play football. It’s not just my opinion, but I think it’s the opinion of all my teammates. “Said Hamed, who presents himself as one of 5 players who worked with Ferreira in 2015.
Nothing to say, indeed, on the technical capacities of the Portuguese. He is a renowned coach in Portugal, given his experiences with the country’s top trio. FC Porto, Benfica and Sporting. But he is best known for his great feat, the one with FC Porto, with which he won the title of Portuguese champion 3 consecutive times (2006-2009). And his exploits with Zamalekduring his first experience, confirmed his coaching talents.
It is clear that supporters of Zamalek are very ambitious with the arrival of Ferreira, but the latter’s mission will not be at all easy given the many challenges facing the team. At the head of these challenges, the bad situation of the team, whether in the championship or in the African competition. The defending champion is in 3rd place in the standings, with 22 points, 4 points behind Pyramids FCthe leader of the classification, and 3 points behind Ahli, who is in 2nd place (but he has played one game less). The situation is worse in the African Champions League, where the team is forced to win its next 3 group matches to advance to the next round, after its disastrous start which saw the team concede 2 draws including 1 at home and a 1-3 loss against Wydad of Casablanca. Zamalek is in a rather critical situation with its 3rd place in the group with 2 points, 5 points behind the Angolans of Petro Atlético who is at the head of the group. The team will therefore have a heavy mission, Saturday, March 12, against the Moroccans of Wydadie 4 days after Ferreira’s arrival.
With players in bad shape, Ferreira’s other challenge is: how to help them get back into shape? The Portuguese will have his work cut out for him, his players certainly have great abilities, but they are quite far from their usual form.
Alongside the technical director, the club’s administration also has a lot to do, especially regarding the fate of the stars, whose contracts come to an end this summer, such as the team’s international goalkeeper Mohamad Abou-Gabal, Moroccan international Achraf Bencharki, and important midfielder Tareq Hamed. With the fate still uncertain, these players seem out of focus, which has clearly translated to their form and thus to the team’s results.