CAIRO: Zamalek failed to go beyond the group stage in the CAF Champions League after slumping to a 1-0 defeat to Zimbabwe s Dynamos, who booked a last-four berth.
Substitute David Shoko, who was introduced late in the game, scored the winner one minute from time.
Zamalek had no choice but to win to stand any chance of advancing to the semis for the first time since 2005.
But they produced an awful display in Harare to miss out on securing passage to the next round.
Ahly, who progressed to the semis as Group A leaders, will be accompanied by Dynamos.
Zamalek skipper Ayman Abdel-Aziz, who returned from suspension, wasn t included in the starting line-up for unknown reasons.
Ahmed Abdel-Raouf partnered Mohamed Aboul-Ella in the heart of Zamalek s midfield.
Dynamic playmaker Mohamed Abdullah supported attacking duo Junior Agogo and Sherif Ashraf, with the latter replacing the suspended Gamal Hamza.
Despite needing a win to book their place in the Champions League semis, Zamalek failed to threaten Dynamos goal in the first half.
They were even lucky not to fall behind on several occasions.
Zamalek had to thank goalkeeper Abdel-Wahed Al-Sayed for keeping their hopes alive.
The 31-year-old goalie superbly blocked two Dynamos efforts from point-blank range. Five minutes before the break, the hosts saw a fierce drive cannon off the woodwork.
Dynamos maintained their complete domination in the second period. They capitalized on Zamalek s slack defending to mount serious threats.
But Al-Sayed prevented Dynamos from taking a deserved lead.
Al-Sayed, who regained his status as Zamalek s first-choice goal keeper following Mohamed Abdel-Monsef s lackluster displays, blocked a handful of clear-cut chances afterwards.
Zamalek coach Reiner Hollmann introduced attacking duo Mostafa Gaafar and Abdel-Halim Ali in a bid to score the much-needed goal.
The White Knights only chance came through veteran striker Ali three minutes from time.
He sidestepped a defender on the edge but his shot flew high over.
Al-Sayed was finally beaten just before the end when Shoko s free-kick sailed over the wall to land at the top corner of the net.