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Zamalek's Mortada Mansour Fires Mido and Hazem Emam

True to his controversial nature, Zamalek SC President Mortada Mansour has dismissed the club's head coach Ahmad Mido and the legendary Hazem Emam following the club's recent appalling performance.

Dismissal of Ahmed Hosam Mido from his position as Zamalek Sports Club’s technical director following Tuesday night’s derby doesn’t come as a complete surprise to most Zamalek fans, or soccer fans generally. Neither does the simultaneous dismissal of Zamalek’s legendary Hazem Emam. After a series of defeats and subpar performances by Zamalek SC throughout the past few weeks, which have left many questioning whether they’re due to technical or tactical reasons, there is no question that the main reason behind Zamalek’s recent decline in performance is none other than the controversial Mortada Mansour.

Mortada Mansour – elected president of Zamalek SC and currently an elected member of parliament – has been one of most controversial members of the Egyptian community for many years. Since his first day as president of Zamalek SC, Mansour arrived with a safe full of money ready to be spent on the club, investing in the purchase of some of the best players available across the Egyptian league. Of course, Zamalek fans anticipated that he would be the one to snatch them out of the miserable decline they had endured over the previous decade. However, what followed was true to Mortada Mansour’s legacy that we’ve all grown accustomed to: he started creating conflict within the club and, as usual, ended up doing whatever he so chose, starting with conflicts with Zamalek’s own fans and escalating so far as to result in court cases – the first time in which a club president presses charges against his own fans and supporters. Mansour’s actions reached the extent of the destruction of the Helmy Zamora studio within the Zamalek Sports Club grounds for the purpose of selling the land to Arab businessmen who would use it for the development of a mall. Naturally, this infuriated Zamalek fans; however, Mansour’s response was to fire Coach Ferrera, who was the driving factor behind Zamalek winning the league and the cup in the previous season.

All of these actions didn’t suffice for the Zamalek Sports Club president, as he proceeded to personally interfere with the club’s technical work by holding private meetings with individual players behind a closed door policy, away from the club’s technical board: Mido and Emam. As if all of this wasn’t enough, he would not only select the players and starting line-up prior to each game, but would also trade any player with whom his opinion conflicted. A series of such interventions created a chaotic atmosphere within the club, hindering Emam and Mido from doing their jobs and leading the team to victory. It didn’t help that Mido and Emam took on their roles halfway through the season following yet another technical turnover, the third change in one season, as a result of the endless conflicts between every technical board and the Zamalek Sports Club management. Constant throughout these conflicts was that they ended with a change of the team’s head coach because of Mansour’s constant interjection in their work.

What’s infuriating Zamalek fans now isn’t the removal of Mido and Emam as the club’s technical board, or the club’s recent appalling results – the circumstances within the club and the interjections by the club’s management created an unfavourable working environment for Mido, Emam, or whomever else, leaving them incapable of rendering the club victorious. Rather, what’s infuriating is the vicious and dictatorial manner in which Zamalek Sports Club President Mortada Mansour interacts with those within the club as well as those outside of it, a manner that takes away from the club’s established prestige and character, restricting it to one character alone: that of Zamalek Sports Club President, Mortada Mansour.

 


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