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Zamalek captain Shikabala wants Egyptian League cancelled

16:05 BST 31/05/2020
Shikabala of Zamalek and AC Leopards' Boris Moubhibo Ngonga
The White Knights’ skipper has expressed his wish for the cancellation of the Egyptian top-flight campaign, which has been on hold due to Covid-19

Zamalek’s Mahmoud "Shikabala" Abdel-Razek has called for the 2019-20 Egyptian football league season to be cancelled.

Several leagues across Africa including that of Egypt were placed on a hiatus following the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic which has claimed several lives as well as crippled several activities worldwide.

The beautiful game is gradually returning owing to the relaxation of lockdowns. For instance, the German elite division is back in full force while the Premier League has been tipped to continue in June.

For the North African country, no decision has been made despite receiving a letter from the Confederation of African Football (Caf) asking national football associations as to when and how their leagues will be determined.

However, the White Knights’ skipper believes ending the league will be the best decision.

“Safety of football players is a priority and they are worried about their families if they get infected.” Shikabala told Egyptian TV as reported by Nilesports.

“In Europe, they have seven or eight rounds to finish the league but here in Egypt we are in a different situation as we still have a full round to finish the league.”

“I think we should wait for more time to return back. It is better to cancel this season and start a new season.”

At the beginning of 2020, Zamalek defeated Esperance 3-1 to win the Caf Super Cup at Doha’s Thani bin Jassim Stadium.

Their last outing before Covid-19 was a 1-0 defeat to Esperance in March inside Stade Olympique de Rades in the second leg of the Caf Champions League quarter-finals.

On the domestic front, the Cairo International Stadium giants are currently fourth in the league after accruing 28 points from 16 matches – 18 adrift of leaders and cross-city rivals Al Ahly, with a game in hand.

For 34-year-old Shikabala, he has featured in four games and one goal this term. The strike came on January 15 in their 2-0 away triumph over El Gouna.

Since joining Zamalek from Aswan in 1996, the winger has spent over 13 seasons at the club – although he had spells at PAOK Thessaloniki, Al Wasl, Sporting Lisbon, Ismaily, Al Raed and Apollon Smyrni.