Tuesday,18 September, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1283, (18 - 24 February 2016)
Tuesday,18 September, 2018
Issue 1283, (18 - 24 February 2016)

Ahram Weekly

Voodoo and other Zamalek tidbits

Things get ugly between the ever controversial Mortada Mansour and his sacked coach Mido, Marawan Zayed reports

Al-Ahram Weekly

Zamalek’s controversial club president Mortada Mansour simply can’t stay away from trouble. Things are getting really ugly between him and the recently sacked football coach Mido as their feud has reached a whole new level.

Mansour famously sacked Mido and his assistant Hazem Emam immediately after the club’s 2-0 loss to their fierce rivals Ahly earlier this month with the legendary pair knowing about their firing from journalists in the stadium after that game rather than being told about it in a professional way.

As we are used from him throughout his stellar career on and off the pitch, Emam chose to step aside in silence without commenting on his firing. Mido stayed quiet for a couple of days before launching an extremely strong verbal attack on Mansour, accusing him of lacking respect towards the club and its “sons” given the way he let go of two “of their most loyal servants”.

“I don’t want to talk about the problems that surround the team now. I will speak when the time is right but I would like to send a message to Mansour that Mido and Emam do not deserve to be sacked live on air,” Mido said in a televised interview late on Friday.“At least we should have been told about our sacking and not to get to know about it through the media… what happened will not go down easily. I will teach you [Mansour] how to respect people,” the 32-year-old manager said.

Mido added that even the best coach in the world like Jose Mourinho would find it impossible to work with somebody like Mansour. “We did our best with the club, but unfortunately we worked with someone that nobody can work with. Even if Mortada brought Jose Mourinho, he would never succeed. Mansour interfered in our work all the time,” Mido added.

However, the highlight of Mido’s accusations towards Mansour was his claim that Mansour uses magic and sorcery to win games and that there is a sheikh that works for the club to perform the witchcraft. “There is a sheikh who works for the club and gets paid LE7,000 a match. I have photos to prove it,” Mido added.

Mansour, as expected, slammed Mido’s accusations and vowed to “make him regret every single word he said”.

“Mido’s claims are totally false. Did we win the league last season by magic? Did we also win the Egypt Cup and Africa’s handball cup titles by magic? He must prove what he said with evidence,” Mansour said in a video published by the club’s official website.  “Mido insulted Zamalek and fans with these declarations and I won’t stand silent against this behaviour.” Mansour then attacked Mido’s entire family including his brother and father who was at the end of some extremely abusive words from the club’s president. Mansour accused Mido’s farther of selling Mido to European clubs at a very young age and indirectly accused Mido of acting inappropriately during his time in Europe. He also charged his departing manager with being “drunk all the time”.

Mansour’s attack on Mido did not win him many new fans as Zamalek supporters are the first to admit that Mansour is a big embarrassment and should step aside along with his two sons who have managerial positions in the club, as soon as possible before the club becomes a laughing stock in the country.

Mido, who played in Ajax, Roma and Tottenham, had previously coached Zamalek, winning the Egypt Cup before being given the boot in 2014. He was 30 at the time, the youngest football coach in Egypt’s history.

He returned to Zamalek this season, replacing Marcos Paqueta of Portugal. His firing comes just two months into his latest coaching stint with Zamalek which gave him his start in football.

The one certainty now is that the feud between Mido and Mansour won’t calm down anytime soon.

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