ABU DHABI // Jorvan Vieira, the Zamalek coach, insists his team will treat their games against Shakhtar Donetsk and Zenit St Petersburg in the Matchworld Cup as serious preparation for their domestic and continental campaigns.
Zamalek meet Shakhtar Donetsk after the opening game between Zenit St Petersburg and Al Hilal of Saudi Arabia in tonight's first day of the friendly tournament at the Zayed Sports City stadium.
The majority of the Zamalek players were due to arrive last night and Vieira said: "We know very well how big the Egyptian community in this country is and we will try to give happiness to them," he said. "The level of this competition is very high. It is a good preparation for us for the domestic league, which is scheduled to start next month, and also our participation in the African Champions League.
"It is good for me as a coach and for my players, especially as we have a young team."
Antoine Kombouare, the Al Hilal coach, will welcome back four key players tonight after a disappointing showing in the Gulf Cup in Bahrain when they failed to progress beyond the group stage.
"It is an honour for Hilal to participate in this tournament," he said. "It is an excellent competition and the opportunity to play against big teams."