Zamalek re-hang ‘Real Club of the Century’ billboard after removing CAF logo

Zamalek rehung on Sunday another billboard on the club’s headquarters in Giza district, declaring the club as the ‘Real Club of the 20th Century,’ four days after removing another billboard that had a Confederation of African Football (CAF) logo in the corner.

The five-time African champions stirred fresh controversy last Friday when they hung a billboard over their premises to proclaim themselves as the “real African club of the 20th century”, reiterating their claim over the matter, Ahram Online reported on Sunday.

They were forced to take down the controversial billboard on Wednesday after being given a stern warning by the CAF, which said the club would face consequences if it refrained from removing the logo of the African governing body due to image rights.

“Please be reminded that the CAF… owns, on an exclusive basis, any and all of the rights related to the usage of its logo and visual identity,” the CAF said in a letter it sent to Zamalek.

“The club has used and placed, without any prior authorisation from the CAF, the CAF official logo on a banner within the club perimeters.

“Consequently, the club is hereby summoned to immediately cease the abovementioned facts by removing the CAF logo from all banners… and to confirm to the CAF in a written reply, within 48 hours of the receipt of this letter, its full consideration and respect of the above subparagraphs.

“Failure to strictly comply with any of the requirements above will lead the CAF to take all necessary measures and actions against your club in order to safeguard the CAF’s rights and interests.”

Twenty years after Ahly were given the honorary prize by the African governing body, Zamalek’s eccentric chairman Mortada Mansour said his club would lodge a complaint with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to “regain their right.”

The message also features an implicit accusation that the CAF had unjustly favoured Ahly, another conspiracy theory long embraced by Zamalek’s hardcore supporters.