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CAF name Timoumi, Zakaria Champions League final ambassadors2 minutes read

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The Confederation of African Football (CAF) have named Morocco legend Mohamed Timoumi and Egypt’s Moamen Zakaria as ambassadors for the Total CAF Champions League 2019/20 final, scheduled for 6 November 2020.

The appointment of the duo is in recognition of their achievements and contribution to the development of the game across the continent.

It will be the first time in recent memory that CAF has named Ambassadors for the final of the premier continental club championship. As part of their role, they will be involved in promotional and media activities amongst others as the curtains to the end of the season folds up.

Timoumi, unarguably one of the finest midfielders of his generation had a distinguished career winning the CAF Champions League in 1985 with FAR Rabat and participating at the 1986 FIFA World Cup in Mexico serving the highlight.

He was born in Rabat on 15 January 1960. He started his career in US Touarga at the age of 18 before moving to FAR Rabat in 1984, where he won the African Cup of Champion Clubs (now CAF Champions League) in 1985.

After excelling with Morocco at the 1986 FIFA World Cup in Mexico when the Atlas Lions became the first African side to reach the second round, he moved to Spanish side Murcia. After one season, he went to Belgium to play for Lokeren. In 1989, he returned home to don the colors of OC Khouribga. Timoumi later played in Oman for Al Suwaiq, before returning to FAR Rabat, where he retired in 1995.

On his part, Zakaria was born in Sohag on 12 April 1988. He started in the youth ranks of Cairo giants Al Ahly before joining El Entag El Harby in 2009. He later played for Al Masry and ENPPI. In 2013 Zakaria moved on loan to Zamalek where he won two Egyptian Cup titles. He joined Al Ahly in January 2015, winning four Egyptian Premier League diadems and a host of domestic titles with the Red Devils. He had a brief loan spell with Saudi side Al Ahli Jeddah in 2018.

Zakaria had his career promising cut short after being diagnosed with the rare neurological disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) in 2019.

ALS is a nervous system disease that weakens muscles and impacts physical function. In this disease, nerve cells break down, which reduces functionality in the muscles that they supply. The cause is unknown.

Liverpool forward and fellow Egyptian Mohamed Salah honoured the midfielder with his celebration after scoring a hat-trick in the Reds’ 4-3 victory over Leeds United on the opening day of the 2020/21 season of the English Premier League on Saturday 12 September.

Meanwhile the competition returns on 17 October 2020 in the Casablanca, with Wydad playing hosts to Al Ahly, while Raja faces Zamalek 24-hours later. The return legs take place on 23 and 24 October respectively in Egypt.

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Algeria Coach Belmadi Extends Contract With Desert Foxes

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Belmadi has signed a new deal

Djamel Belmadi has signed a new deal with the Algerian Football Federation as he remains the coach of the Desert Foxes.

Belmadi has signed a new deal to keep him as coach of the Desert Foxes until the 2022 FIFA World Cup to be hosted by Qatar.

The Algerian football president Kheireddine Zetchi said Belmadi’s contract extension was important following his achievements in a short time.

“When Belmadi arrived as the coach of the Greens, he had made no conditions,” said Zetchi.

“The national team was going through a difficult period and it is to his credit to have placed the recovery of the technical situation before any other consideration.

“With what he managed to do in record time and in the most beautiful way, it is logical that after the continental coronation in Egypt, we have reviewed his contract.”

Algeria currently sit on top of their Africa Cup Of Nations (AFCON) qualifying table, with six points from two games as they are on course to qualify for the tournament.

Brazil 2014 was the last time Algeria played at the World Cup where they reached the Round of 16, before losing to eventual winners Germany.

The Algerian coach is looking to take the Desert Foxes back to the World stage and also making an impact.

“The objective will be to give everything and believe in the impossible,” Belmadi said.

“When we have done the work, when we have qualified, the objective will be to win it.

“We will now speak seriously, the objective will not be to just participate, the players do not set any limits.”

Belmadi replaced Rabah Madjer as the coach of the Algerian national team, following his failure to lead them to the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

In less than a year in charge of the Desert Foxes, Belmadi led Algeria to win the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Egypt.

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Hunt reacts to Kaizer Chiefs failed CAS appeal

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Hunt reacts to failed appeal

Head coach of Kaizer Chiefs Gavin Hunt reacts to failed appeal of his club to overturn a FIFA transfer ban.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) dismissed Chiefs appeal against a two-window transfer ban.

The Glamour Boys inability to register new players for two consecutive transfer windows has affected Hunt’s plans in his first season in charge of the club.

In the post-match press conference after Amakhosi’s 1-0 victory over Chippa United, Hunt reacts to failed appeal as he talked about the transfer ban.

“I’ve been working here for the last month under the illusion that it was not going to get turned over, and it didn’t, so I’ve got to make it better,” Hunt said.

“I’m going to try and improve the team by trying to improve the players.”

Chiefs were found guilty when they signed Andriamirado “Dax” Andrianarimanana in 2018. Andriamirado’s former club, Fosa Juniors lodged an official complaint to FIFA stating that Chiefs did not compensate them justifiably for the transfer of the player.

Hunt stated that he has no choice, but to work with the players he has at his disposal and get on with the job.

“I mean, obviously, we know there are certain players in certain positions where we lack, but it is what it is and I must just get on with it,” Hunt added.

“So, one step forward, we try and mould players the way I’m thinking and according to what I’m trying to do, and we’ll go from there.”

With the transfer ban upheld, Chiefs who have former Wits duo of Sifiso Hlanti and Phathutshedzo Nange training with the team, it remains to be seen if both players will continue training with the team.

Amakhosi are said to be interested in former Wits free agent, goalkeeper Brandon Peterson. Chiefs were also been linked with Thabang Monare and Deon Hotto, who have both joined Orlando Pirates.

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West Brom Manager Bilic Unhappy With Hegazi’s Al-Ittihad Move

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Manager of West Bromwich Albion Slaven Bilic has stated how disappointed he is with the transfer of Ahmed Hegazi to Saudi Arabian side Al-Ittihad.

Hegazi made the move to Al-Ittihad on a loan deal, but will sign on a permanent deal at the end of the 2020-2021 season.

The Egyptian defender made the move to West Brom from Egyptian Premier League side Al Ahly in 2017, and has made 104 appearances across all competitions.

Hegazi played an important role as West Brom gained promotion to the English Premier League as he made 14 starts for the club.

Bilic has talked about his frustration after West Brom signed off the loan move that took Hegazi away from the Hawthorns.

“He has experience. He is a top professional,” Bilic said.

“I wanted him to stay and he wanted to stay and then something happened and then he is off although I had assurances from the club that he would stay.

“That happened yesterday. Of course, I am not pleased. I am really disappointed because we need players. There is, of course, the economic side but we are a football club.”

Hegazi wrote an emotional farewell to West Brom and the fans.

“To my dear Baggies, I would like to thank you deeply for all the support you have given me over the past three years, through all the ups and downs. You have been amazing to me and my family,” the Egyptian wrote on Instagram.

“And I have always endeavoured to repay this faith by giving absolutely everything on the pitch for this great club, the fans and my teammates.

“I would also like to thank my teammates, coaches, and all the staff at West Bromwich Albion for welcoming me from day one, you have become family and I will miss you all, I wish you the best of luck for the rest of the season and the future.

“Now I’m looking forward to starting a new challenge with Al Ittihad club, which is one of the biggest and most popular in the Arab region, Asia.”

Al-Ittihad will face Al Ahli in a Pro League game this weekend, and Hegazi might be in line to make his league debut.

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