5 things you need to know about Pitso Mosimane’s new club, Al Ahly

05 October 2020 - 06:38
By cebelihle bhengu AND Cebelihle Bhengu
Former Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Pitso Mosimane has joined Al Ahly.
Image: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix Former Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Pitso Mosimane has joined Al Ahly.

The departure of Pitso Mosimane from Mamelodi Sundowns sent shock waves through the soccer fraternity and surprised many fans of Mamelodi Sundowns.

Mosimane left Sundowns after signing a four-year contract with the club in May.

In an interview on Saturday, Mosimane likened joining the Egyptian club Al Ahly with an opportunity to coach “Real Madrid or Barcelona in Europe.”

He said his move to one of Africa's biggest clubs will show local coaches that possibilities are endless.

Here are five things you need to know about Mosimane's new venture:

So who is this Al Ahly? 

According to Britannica, Al Ahly is an Egyptian football club based in Cairo. It was initially formed as a sports club for high school children in 1907, with Mitchel Ince its first president. The club is among the biggest and most supported football clubs in Africa.

Yes, but have they won anything?

The club's players are known as the "red devils" because of their red shirts and impeccable soccer skills. They were also awarded the title of "African Club of the Century" by the Confédération Africaine de Football (CAF) in 2000, but they have won many more.

  • The club won the Sultan Hussein Cup seven times between 1917 and 1938, the last year it was contested.
  • They won the inaugural league title of the Egyptian Premier League in the 1948/49 season, and only lost for the first time in 1960.
  • Al Ahly has won 41 Egyptian League championships, including eight in a row starting in the 2004/5 season.
  • In 1982, the club won its first African Champions League title, going on to win it six times. 

Mosimane was a firm favourite

A TimesLIVE report states that Al Ahly had long eyed Mosimane, who was approached after winning Mamelodi Sundowns' 10th premiership title in September. The club reportedly also had its eyes on Italy's Luciano Spalleti, but Mosimane had a big fan in club president Mohmoud El Khatib.

A source who spoke to TimesLIVE said Mosimane's move to Al Ahly made him the first black African coach to head one of the “top north African clubs.” 

Who is Mosimane replacing? 

Mosimane took over from Swiss coach Rene Weiler, who reportedly has a job lined up in Europe. He joined the club in August 2019 and took over from Patrice Carteron, according to Kingfut. Weiler secured two titles for the club last season, namely the Egyptian Super Cup and the Egyptian Premier League.

When is his first match?

Goal. Com reports that he started work with Al Ahly on Friday to prepare the team for the Egyptian Premier League match against Al Mokawloon on Sunday. A match which they won 1-0.

PODCAST | From Cape to Cairo, Rhulani on Pitso​