CAIRO: Ismaili have lodged a complaint with the Confederation of African Football (CAF) over what they described as ‘biased refereeing’ from Koman Coulibaly in their 2-1 defeat by Ahly on Sunday.
The Dervishes slumped to their second successive defeat in the African Champions League group stage after a heartbreaking last-gasp loss to bitter rivals Ahly.
Central defender Wael Gomaa scored Ahly’s winner in the fourth minute of stoppage time with a close-range header after a deep free kick from holding midfielder Hossam Ghaly.
The goal sparked furious protests from Ismaili’s players and technical staff members, who believed their team should have been awarded a free-kick in the build up after Ahmed Hassan apparently pushed defender Ahmed Hegazi.
Ismaili players surrounded Coulibaly after the final whistle. The Malian referee needed protection from police to leave the pitch.
"We filed a complaint against the referee because he allowed an illegitimate goal to stand in the additional time to cause our defeat," Ismaili spokesman Alaa Wahid told FilGoal.com.
The one-time African champions have already voiced their concerns over the appointment of Coulibaly before the game.
Moroccan referee Abdellah El Achiri was due to take charge of the match but he was replaced by Coulibaly after apparently suffering a back injury.
Ismaili heavily criticized the 40-year-old for expressing his gratitude to Ahly for their ‘warm reception’ ahead of the game.
"We had doubts before the match after the praise Coulibaly heaped on Ahly," Wahid added.
"Those doubts are now justified; everything was clear on the pitch. Look at Ahly’s second goal in the dying seconds."