Wednesday,19 June, 2019
Current issue | Issue 1347, (1 - 7 June 2017)
Wednesday,19 June, 2019
Issue 1347, (1 - 7 June 2017)

Ahram Weekly

Rating the stars

At season’s end, Salah and Kahraba shine, Gaber struggles and Trezeguet faces uncertain future

As the domestic football season comes to an end, we present an overall review and a rating of some of the star Egyptians playing overseas. First we start with our main man and the one who’s making his nation proud more and more every day, none other than Mohamed Salah. Mo Salah, as they call him in Italy, had a dream season and was clearly and easily one of the best five players in the Italian league thanks to his 15 goals and 12 assists in addition to another four goals and five assists in the cup and the Europa League with Roma to take his tally for the season to 19 goals and 17 assists in just 41 games.

The stats make it the best season in Salah’s short career so far as he managed to better last season’s number when he scored 15 goals and set up another 11. Salah alongside Dzeko formed the most dangerous partnership in the league this season as no team managed to cope with their threat or even come close to stopping them. Salah’s contribution actually exceeded his goals and assists as his speed and trickery ensured that opponents set up their formations throughout the season on how to stop him which gave his teammates, especially Dzeko and Shaarawy, the chance to exploit spaces and goal opportunities distributed by our Egyptian wizard.


The one drawback of Salah’s season was his inability to guide his team to any silverware as they finished second in the league and lost both the cup and the Europa League. That’s why Salah gets 8.5 out of 10 for his overall contribution which could have gone higher if Roma had won any of the three competitions.

Mahmoud Kahraba is another player who enjoyed a brilliant season on loan at Saudi side Ittihad Jeddah from Zamalek. Kahraba managed to win the Saudi Cup when he scored the only goal of the final to cap off a magnificent season in which he scored and assisted for fun.


Kahraba meant business when he left Zamalek for Saudi Arabia and immediately won the hearts of the Ittihad fans thanks to his slick skills and great eye for goal. Goal after goal and assist after assist saw Kahraba finish the season as the third top scorer of the Saudi league thanks to his 16 goals in just 20 games in addition to a massive 14 assists. His goal in the final of the cup was the least Kahraba deserved given his contribution with his club this season as he was clearly the star man of the season despite finishing the league in fourth position. Kahraba gets 8.5/10 for his overall contribution this season. Kahraba’s next destination is still unknown as Zamalek President Mortada Mansour is not willing to let him leave at a cheap price after the explosive season he had but the Saudi side is trying everything to either sign him permanently or at least extend the loan deal for another season.


Leaving those who shone and moving to those who struggled, Omar Gaber comes on top of the list of Egyptians who had a disappointing debut season, with Basel of Switzerland, despite winning the league title with the team. Gaber, who initially hoped to follow the footsteps of Salah and Mohamed Al-Nenni of Arsenal, played only nine times all season despite starting the season as the main right back of the Swiss champions. He started the first few games of the season but his performances were somehow patchy and he eventually ended up being relegated to the bench and didn’t see much action apart from brief cameos until he started the last league game of the season after his team sealed the league title to give him silverware in his first season outside Egypt. Even though he’ll surely feel he didn’t contribute much Gaber can still be forgiven as many world class players struggle at first when they leave their countries and move to a foreign nation. Gaber gets five out of 10 for his contribution this season but hopefully next season he’ll manage to settle in and get back to his best and show what he can do.

Finally, we have Mahmoud Trezeguet who all of a sudden faces uncertainty regarding his future after Anderlecht took the shocking decision of putting him up for sale. The Belgian giants announced last week that the Egyptian winger can leave the club because he’s not part of the plans of their coach despite shining this season on loan with Mouscron. It was believed that Anderlecht sent Trezeguet on loan this season to gain experience and play regularly then have him back at their ranks next season only to announce that he’s up for sale.

The Egyptian winger notched five goals and set up another four for the mediocre Belgian side this season and showed glimpses of his undoubted potential but Anderlecht decided to sell the player as he’s “not tactically disciplined” if reports from Belgium are to be believed.

Trezeguet’s next destination is unknown yet some reports indicate he may return to Egyptian club Ahly if he fails to find a good European club but the player is said to be extremely determined to prove himself in Europe especially after being linked to huge clubs like Liverpool and Arsenal earlier this season after some eye-catching performances with his club. The player played a huge part as Mouscron avoided relegation and even managed to reach the playoffs of the Europa League but now faces uncertainty. Hopefully our young talented star will find a way to stay in Europe and prove Anderlecht wrong. Trezeguet gets 6.5 out of 10 from us this season.

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