The Cairo Derby between Al Ahly and Zamalek is arguably the biggest football match in the African continent.
Ever since their creation, both clubs have been the top clubs in the Egyptian Premier League (Al Ahly were formed in 1907, while Zamalek were formed in 1911.
Officially, the Cairo derby dates back to the maiden Egyptian Premier League season in 1948/1949 with a 2-2 draw.
The result of the second meeting set a domestic trend that largely persists to this day with Ahly leading Zamalek 45-27 in league wins and 16-10 in Egyptian Cup victories.
The largest winning margin in a Cairo derby was 6-0 for Zamalek at the 1944 Egypt Cup Final, while the biggest winning margin in the League was for Al Ahly 6-1 in 2002.
Although they have 13 CAF Champions League titles between them (Al Ahly 8 and Zamalek 5), this will be the first time they have face each other in the final of the competition.
Al Ahly and Zamalek first met in the Champions League in the semi-final of the 2005 edition when Al Ahly claimed a 2-1 victory in the first leg.
Al-Ahly then defeated Zamalek 2-0 in the return leg to go through.
The two teams faced-off again in the quarter-final stage of the 2008 tournament when Al Ahly secured a 2-1 win in the first round while their second encounter in the fifth round ended in a 2-2 draw.
The same scenario was repeated when the Red Devils clashed with the White knights in the group stage in 2012 with Al Ahly’s legend Mouhamed Aboutrika leading his team to a 1-0 victory in the second round before the two teams tied 1-1 in the sixth round.
The last African encounter between the two sides took place when the quarter-final draw in 2013 placed both of them in the same group once again. The first game ended in a 1-1 draw while Al Ahly managed to crush Zamalek with 4 goals and claim a landslide victory in the second encounter.
They have met competitively 215 times with the Red Devils of Al Ahly triumphant on 91 occasions, the White Knights of Zamalek 50 times and 74 matches drawn.
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By Ofhani Munyai