April 17 – Three thousand Al Ahly fans have been suspended for two games for shouting “insults” aimed at Zamalek’s Egypt international Shikabala during the club’s last game against Pharco.
Even though league leaders Al Ahly were not playing Zamalek, their fans vented their anger towards midfielder Shikabala in what has been a long-running saga of insult trading. Al Ahly were also fined 20,000 Egyptian pounds ($650) for the incident.
“If the insults are repeated fans will be banned from attending league matches until the end of the season,” the Egyptian Premier League said in a statement on Sunday.
Egypt allows a maximum of 6,000 fans to attend any domestic match, with each team’s allocation capped at 3,000 ever since the 2012 Port Said Stadium disaster in which more than 70 Al Ahly fans were killed and several hundred injured.
The only exception is for international fixtures featuring the national team or games organised by the Confederation of African Football (CAF).
“The league’s dream is to have fans to the full capacity of the stadiums and we made great efforts to increase the number of fans. We don’t want anyone to spoil these efforts,” EPL president Ahmed Diab said.
“We punish only the wrongdoers and those who break the rules, and the punishment is not collective.”
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