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FIFA Club Wolrd Cup

Ten-Man Al Ahly Fall To Palmeiras In Semi-Final

Brazilian champions Palmeiras are through to the final of the FIFA Club World Cup but only after laboring to a 2-0 win over African giants Al Ahly in the semi-final at Al-Nahyan Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday.

It was a slow start to the match by both teams with the first real shot on goal coming in the 13th minute courtesy of Palmeiras’ Gustavo Scarpa, but his long range effort was superbly saved by Ali Lofti.

The Brazilians were forceful going forward as  Raphael Veiga came close came close to giving them the lead in the 24th minute with a cracking strike from outside the box that was parried away by Lofti at full stretch.

It took a while for Al Ahly to get going but they should have opened the scoring in the 32nd minute. Hussein El-Shahat managed to break through on goal but he was flagged offside.

Palmeiras eventually broke the deadlock in the 39th minute after Raphael Veiga beat an offside trap to go clear on goal before placing the ball beyond Lofti.

Four minutes later, the hosts missed a golden chance as Amr El-Sulaya side-footed wide of the mark  from six-yards as the sides went into the break with Palmeriras leading 1-0.

Al Ahly came out more attacking in the second half as they managed to carve out chances, with the likes of Magdi Afsha and Ali Maaloul going close in the opening four minutes.

However, Palmeiras extended their lead on the 49th minute after pacey winger Dudu collected a superb back-heel pass from Veiga before firing a powerful angled shot into the top far corner of the net.

With Al Ahly struggling to create chances, Pitso Mosimane introduced Rami Rabia, striker Mohamed Sherif and Hamdi Fathi for Rami Rabia, Hussein El-Shahat and Amr El-Sulaya respectively.

10 minutes later, Hamdi Fathi was presented with a chance to reduce the deficit for the Red Devils but he blazed over the crossbar from 10-yards out.

Al Ahly had a goal by Ahmed Abdel-Kader denied on the 72nd minute after winger was judged to have been offside  by VAR after placing a rebound shot into the back of the net.

The Red Devils were reduced to ten-men when Ayman Ashraf  give marching orders for a reckless challenge on an opponent.

Palmeiras looked to increase the tempo in the closing stages of the match but Al Ahly managed to get a  chance in added time with playmaker Magdi Afsha’s header hitting the post.

How they lined-up:

Palmeiras: Weverton, Marcos Rocha, Gustavo Gomez, Luan Garcia, Joaquin Piquerez, Dudu, Danilo, Raphael Veiga, Ze Rafael, Gustavo Scarpa, Rony

Ahly: Ali Lotfi, Yasser Ibrahim, Rami Rabia, Ayman Ashraf, Mohamed Hani, Ali Maaloul, Aliou Dieng, Amr El-Sulaya, Magdi Afsha, Hussein El-Shahat, Taher Mohamed Taher

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