Pitso Mosimane's Al Ahly claimed the bragging rights in the first Cairo Derby of the season after thrashing Zamalek 5-3 on Friday evening.
Mosimane made three changes, as they were bolstered by the return of shot-stopper Mohamed El Shanawy, alongside recalls for Mohamed Sherif and Aliou Dieng while Percy Tau made his first derby appearance in the line-up.
The Red Devils had a dream start as they got the opener in the 16th minute after Dieng's deflected strike struck the crossbar and ricocheted off goalkeeper Mohamed Abou Gabal, into the back of the net.
Al Ahly's fortunes increased three minutes later after they were awarded a penalty for a foul on Ali Ma'aloul and Ma'aloul took the spot-kick himself and gave Mosimane's charges a two-goal lead.
The Red Devils were threatening to run away with the game in the 25th minute as Sherif gave them a commanding 3-0 lead with a good finish inside the box after a delightful cross by Amr El Soleya.
After a poor first-half showing, Zamalek came back fired up from the half-time break, as Mostafa Fathi pulled a goal back six minutes in with a great strike from outside the box into the top corner.
However, the Red Devils produced their own magic two minutes later, as Dieng restored their three-goal lead with a curling strike into the top corner from outside the box following a corner.
Al Ahly were were awarded a penalty for a foul on El Soleya. Ma'aloul went up to take the spot-kick again but he effort was saved by Gabal, but the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) ordered a retake, where Ma'aloul made no mistake at the second time of asking.
Mosimane made a double change in the last 20 minutes, as Luis Miquissone replaced Tau and Hussein El Shahat came on for Mohamed Magdi Kafsha.
After scoring a penalty earlier in the half, Ma'aloul conceded a penalty for the Red Devils in the last ten minutes after a foul inside the box, which allowed Sayed Zizo to reduce the deficit for Patrice Carteron's troops.
Achraf Bencharki got the third goal in the last minute for Zamalek with a half-volley inside the box but it was too little too late, as Al Ahly went to the top of the log after ending Zamalek's winning start.
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