Egypt’s Zamalek were punished for wasting a plethora of goal-scoring chances after conceding a last-gasp equaliser in a 1-1 draw at home to Algeria’s NA Hussein Dey which left them without a win in two-group stage games at the African Confederation Cup.
The hosts took the lead on the quarter-hour mark, thanks to a maiden goal by Morocco striker Khalid Boutaib, and they looked on their way to a comfortable win after creating chances at will.
However, their wastefulness cost them dear, with the Algerians striking at the death after a defensive lapse as a 90th-minute goal from Faouzi Yaya on the second attempt broke the hearts of a vociferous crowd at Alexandria’s Borg El-Arab Stadium.
For all their superb displays in the Egyptian Premier League, which they look well-equipped to win, Zamalek appear a shadow of their efficient self in Africa’s secondary club competition despite their attractive brand of attacking football.
They lie at the bottom of Group D with one point, two behind Kenya’s Gor Mahia and Angola’s Petro Atletico and three adrift of leaders NA Hussein Dey.
Zamalek were in complete control in the first half, moving the ball around smoothly and displaying an intricate passing game that left the visitors chasing shadows.
They needed 15 minutes to go ahead after NA Hussein Dey’s defence was dispossessed, with lively right-back Hamdi Nagguez pulling the ball back to Mahmoud Kahraba, whose lay-off found Boutaib to arrow a low shot first time into the bottom corner.
Kahraba also had a snap shot tipped over by keeper Gaya Merbah as Zamalek laid siege to the area.
They eased off a bit in the early stages of the second half but Hussein Dey hardly took advantage, failing to muster a single effort on goal.
Kahraba was guilty of two misses in one-on-one situations and Zamalek paid the price after he was replaced, with Yaya netting a precious equaliser.
A free kick was floated into the area and flicked to Yaya, whose initial effort was palmed by keeper Mahmoud Gennesh but he made no mistake on the second attempt to stun Zamalek.