Egypt confirms absence of key players ahead of Guinea qualifier
Some key players won’t take part in Egypt’s final World Cup qualifying group match against Guinea on Tuesday, due to minor injures and suspension worries.
Despite Hosni Abd-Rabo and Mohamed Nagy ‘Gedo’ being named in Egypt’s provisional squad, the medical staff preferred to leave them and Mohamed El-Nenny out of the Guinea clash on September 10th, allowing the trio to take more time off to recover from their injuries.
Meanwhile, the Egyptian national team will play without essential centre-backs Ahmed Hegazy and Wael Gomaa. Fiorentina’s Hegazy is set be sidelined for up to six months after tests conducted by the Serie A side revealed problems with the same knee they operated on last December. Bradley also preferred to drop Gomaa to avoid risking suspension, as he would be forced out of the first-leg of the final round of World Cup qualifying if he picked up another yellow card. This could lead to Brighton-born Adam El-Abd getting his first competitive start for the Pharaohs.
Egypt also dropped Hossam Ashour for the same reason as Gomaa, to make sure the central midfielder will be available for the final qualifiers – five home-and-away fixtures played in October and November to determine the five Africa nations which progress to Brazil 2014.
Despite these absences, Zamalek left-back Mohamed Abdel-Shafy decided not to join the Egypt squad after given permission to leave due to family matters, he stated. The next days he was reportedly seen training with Zamalek, which reportedly frustrated Bradley and may keep him out the squad.
The result the Pharaohs achieve against Guinea on September 10th is now essentially meaningless, with Egypt already confirmed Group G winners and having no chance of breaking into the seeded pot.