Al Ahly make historic announcement

African Watch

African giants Al Ahly have made a major announcement on the club's future in yet another promising step within their 112-year history.

The Club of The Century, known as the greatest innovators, richest and most successful club on the continent, has been without an official stadium since outgrowing the Mokhtar El-Tetsh, which is now their training ground.

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Having shared the Cairo International and Borg Al Arab venues with rivals Zamalek in recent years, the eight-time CAF Champions League winners have confirmed they've secured a 25-year lease for a new home ground.

The Al Salam Stadium, which played host to Bafana Bafana during the group stage of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, has officially been renamed the Al Ahly Stadium.

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While the reigning Egyptian Premier League champions still plan to build a 60 000-seater arena, their new venue, which was built in 2009, accommodates 30 000 fans.

One of the key reasons behind dumping the two iconic venues that can host nearly double the number of fans was the condition of the pitches.

"Ahly will take Salam Stadium for the next 25 years, which is a good solution," Mahmoud Dia of Goal Arabia tells KickOff.com.

"Some of the pitches in Egypt are not up to international standard due to the sheer amount of games played out at the likes of the Borg Al Arab and the National Stadium.

"So the new elected Al Ahly board confirmed, they will make the stadium built for the 2009 U-20 World Cup their own."

The club has confirmed that its latest decision will see them pocket an annual return of £55 million (R1 billion) due to reduced costs of rental of stadia, costs of travelling and training venues outside of Cairo.

Season tickets will now also be available to their fans, which constitutes over 70% of the Egyptian population, while there will be additional income streams for commercial and marketing investments.

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