World Cup Qualifying: Egypt 2-0 Mozambique
Bob Bradley’s Pharaohs begin 2014 World Cup qualifying with a 2-0 over Mozambique behind closed-doors in Alexandria.
Thankfully, Mohamed Abou-Treika back-tracked on his decision to retire. The smiling assassin put in a real inspiring performance orchestrating the midfield throughout. Majority of Treika’s passes fell to Mohamed Salah, (first competitive international cap) who started on the right of Treika, but the new FC Basel forward failed to convert against Mozambique’s keeper João Kapongo (played over 200 games for Egyptian-side Tersana). Egypt dominated possession but were very wasteful in the first half.
Mohamed Nagy ‘Gedo’ looked lost playing up-front, Bradley responded quickly and replaced him with Mohamed Zidan after halftime. Game tempo quickly rose after Zidan’s introduction. 10 minutes later, Hosni Abd-Rabo’s cross found the tallest man on the pitch, 21-year-old Ahmed Hegazy, who headed it down towards his centre-back partner Mahmoud Fathallah to slide home. Within another 10 minutes, another debutant, Ahmed Temsah assisted Mohamed Zidan’s ping-pong effort – smashed the post and bounced in off of Kapongo’s head. The Pharaohs cruised for the remainder of the game.
Bob Bradley was pleased with the new blood in the squad, “I think that for Temsah, Mohamed El-Nenny and Mohamed Salah, the first World Cup qualifier is very important… And I think they handled this game and this moment very well. This is a big step for young players.”
When Bradley was asked about playing without an audience, he casually responds, “You look into the empty stands, but we had 90 million people with us today.”
Egypt play their next World Cup qualifier in Guinea on Saturday June 10th.
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