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Egypt adds 4 each from Ahly, Zamalek to squad for friendlies
Egypt manager Shawky Gharib added eight new players to his squad for upcoming friendlies against Chile and Jamaica.
Goalkeeper Sherif Ekramy (Ahly), defenders Ahmed Fathy, Rami Rabia (both Ahly), Mohamed Abdel-Shafy (Zamalek); midfielders Omar Gaber, Momen Zakaria, Hazem Emam (all Zamalek); and striker Amr Gamal (Ahly) round-out the 35-man roster.
There was some uncertainty over whether players from Ahly and Zamalek, Cairo’s two biggest clubs, would be included given commitments in ongoing African competitions.
This brings the number of players receiving their maiden call-ups to eight, with Zakaria being added to a list that includes goalkeepers Mohamed El-Shennawy (Petrojet) and Mohamed Awad (Ismaily); defenders Ali Gaber (Ittihad Alexandria), Mahmoud Ezzat (Arab Contractors), and Hussein El-Sayed (Maqassa); and forwards Basem Morsi (El-Engag El-Harby) and Ahmed Sherwida (Ittihad Alexandria).
Among the biggest surprises to the initial 27-man squad announced last Thursday was the inclusion of 31-year-old Tala’a El-Gaish striker Salah Amin, who was previously suspended for a making political gesture in support of presidential candidate and army field marshal Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi after scoring a goal.
The most-represented clubs on the squad are now Ahly, Zamalek, and lesser-known Alexandria outfit Smouha with four players each.
Preparations for the upcoming matches are already underway, with the team taking on Chile in Santiago on May 30 before heading to London for a June 3 clash with Jamaica.
The Pharaohs are preparing for Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers, which kick-off in September. The team has not qualified for the tournament since 2010, when they won their third successive title and seventh overall, both record feats.
Goalkeepers: Sherif Ekramy (Ahly), Essam El-Hadary (Wadi Degla), Ahmed El-Shennawy (Masry), Mohamed El-Shennawy (Petrojet), Mohamed Awad (Ismaily)
Defenders: Aly Ghazal (Nacional de Madera – Portugal), Ahmed Fathy (Ahly), Rami Rabiaa (Ahly) Ahmed Said (Smouha), Shawky Said (Ismaily), Ali Gaber (Ittihad Alexandria), Ahmed Dweidar (Ittihad El-Shorta), Mahmoud Ezzat (Arab Contractors), Ibrahim Abdel-Khaleq (Smouha), Ali Fathi (Arab Contractors), Hussein El-Sayed (Maqassa)
Midfielders: Mohamed El-Nenny (Basel – Switzerland), Hossam Ghaly (Lierse – Belgium), Ahmed Elmohamady (Hull City – England), Hosni Abd-Rabo (Ismaily), Saleh Gomaa (Nacional de Madera – Portugal), Omar Gaber (Zamalek), Mo’man Zakareya (Zamalek), Hazem Emam (Zamalek), Tarek Hamed (Smouha), Mohamed Farouk (Arab Contractors), Ahmed Hamoudi (Smouha)
Forwards: Mohamed Salah (Chelsea – England), Ahmed Hassan ‘Koka’ (Rio Ave – Portugal), Amr Gamal (Ahly), Basem Morsi (El-Entag El-Harby), Khaled Kamar (Ittihad El-Shorta), Ahmed Sherwida (Ittihad of Alexandria), Salah Amin (Tala’a El-Gaish)