Chaos at Cairo football match

After a goal by Egypt's Zamalek team was disallowed,angry fans stormed the pitch, attacking the rival Tunisian team.

    An incredible scene took place at Cairo's main stadium during the much-anticipated match between top Egyptian team Zamalek and Tunisia's Club African.

    Club African, which beat Zamalek 4-2 in an earlier match nearly two weeks ago, was again ahead 2-1 on Saturday. 

    But the game broke down after thousands Egyptian fans invaded the pitch, and according to Ahramonline, three Tunisian players are missing, with Egyptian fans damaging the stadium when a Zamalek goal was nixed for an offside.

    The Egyptian players can clearly be seen forming a human shield around the Tunisian players in an attempt to protect them from the angry mob.

    Al Jazeera's Zeina Khodr, reporting from Cairo, said that the stadium was not heavily guarded. "There was a lack of police personnel," said Khodr. 

    "Local and international matches have been suspended over the past weeks as a result of the uprising. They only resumed recently." 

    According to RassdNews, the army intervened to disperse the crowd.

    Egypt's official news agency, MENA, quoted an official with the health ministry as saying that nine people were wounded in the fracas.

    Egyptians took to microblogging site Twitter and expressed sorrow and regret for what happened on the pitch on Saturday night.

    One witness with the Twitter handle Kalimakhus posted from the stadium that the behaviour of those who stormed the pitch, attacking the Tunisian players was a source of "shame and disaster" on Egyptian history.

    Another Tweeter, Raafatology, echoed what many other Egyptians expressed - regret - when he posted, "Dear #Tunisia, I'm sorry about what happened today. You must believe this really isn't us. Sincerely, #Egypt".

    Despite the fact that pro-democracy fans in each country supported the other in the recent uprisings that saw long-standing dictators deposed, the rivalry between the two teams is historically heated.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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