African champions Al Ahly lost their 30-month unbeaten domestic record on Sunday, emphatically beaten 3-0 by Ismaili in the Egyptian premier league. It was the first defeat for Al Ahly in Egypt since they lost the Egyptian Cup final to Arab Contractors in July 2004. Their last league loss was against arch rivals Zamalek in May 2004.
Mohamed Fadl scored twice against his former club and Abdullah Al Saied grabbed the other in the top of the table clash. Al Ahly s lead in the standings is trimmed to six points.
Supporters in the coastal city of Ismailia flooded the streets, honking their car horns and waving yellow flags and scarves in joy.
Traffic was brought to standstill in the main streets, especially around the Ismailia stadium.
They chanted supporting slogans and paid tribute to striker Mohamed Fadl and caretaker manager Sabri Al-Miniawi.
Former Ahly player Fadl netted the second and third goals late in both periods with delicate chips to sink the Red Devils after Abdullah Al-Saied hammered the opener in the ninth minute.
Ismailia-based reporter Yasser Al-Sherif said crowds expressed their desire to appoint Al-Miniawi, who is in charge temporarily till signing a foreign coach, on a permanent basis.
This was Ahly s first league defeat since losing 2-1 to arch-rivals Zamalek in May 2004.
Since then, they have extended an unprecedented 71-league-game unbeaten run.
It was also Ismaili s first league victory over Ahly in Cairo since the 1991-1992 season.
Sunday s victory closed the gap between Ismaili and Egyptian Premier League leaders Ahly to only six points, with 14 matches to go.
Fans urged the club administration, who promised big bonuses to the players and coaching staff after the big triumph, to build on this result and reinforce the team to keep the title hopes alive.
Al-Sherif said that beating Ahly shifted the mainstream among fans, wishing the club would hold on to international right-back Ahmed Fathi, who is set to make a switch to the Premiership.
He said that demands of landing a prolific striker are on the rife, especially after media reports linked Ismaili with a Nigerian forward believed to be playing for two-time African champions Enyimba.