Egyptian football icon Mahmoud “Bebo” El-Khatib has become Ahly’s new chairman after soundly defeating incumbent Mahmoud Taher as more than 36,000 members of the general assembly voted on Thursday for new club president and board.
The 62-year-old El-Khatib, winner of the 1983 African Player of the Year, received 20,956 votes while his opponent Taher only received 13,182 votes.
Bebo’s entire slate for members of the board also carried the day.
El-Khatib and the new board will serve a three-year period.
“I thank Ahly’s general assembly members for their support during the election as well as the Ahly fans,” El-Khatib told a television programme after the voting finished.
“The responsibility became big for the coming management. We are now responsible of serving the club,”
“I hope the coming period will be good for the club.”
“I expected a huge turnout of the club’s general assembly; I thank all of them for attending.”
“We will do our best to achieve the club’s target,” Bebo said.
El-Khatib, one of the all-time best Ahly and Egypt players, said that he had been asked by “Ahly members and fans” to save the club’s “values and principles”.
Bebo was voted the Arab Sportsman of the 20th Century and is the only Egyptian to win the African Player of the Year awarded at the time by French magazine France Football.
He inspired Ahly to win a series of domestic and continental trophies back in the 1970s and 1980s, including 10 Egyptian league titles, five Egypt Cups, two African Champions Leagues and three African Cup winners.