Seven Pharaohs Abroad called up for Ghana play-off – Elmo dropped
Led by American coach Bob Bradley, the Egyptian national team are set to begin a training camp on 11 November ahead of the second leg of the World Cup qualifying play-off against Ghana on 19 November. However, the Pharaohs coach has excluded Hull City’s Ahmed Elmohamady – the only Egyptian who features regularly in one of Europe’s top five leagues.
Elmohamady was harshly penalised for a handball that gifted Tottenham a 1-0 win in the Premier League and then missed the decisive spot-kick in Hull’s Capital One Cup penalty shoot-out defeat at White Hart Lane, but his exclusion is highly unlikely due to club form. The right wing-back had a nightmare in Kumasi after coming on as a substitute in the first half, and was directly at fault for at least one of the goals conceded.
Meanwhile, Elmo’s Hull City team-mate Gedo, who did not play in the first leg for Egypt but featured against Spurs in the Capital One Cup, was re-called to the squad.
Pharaohs coach Bob Bradley expressed his satisfaction with the team’s preparation schedule, which includes a friendly game against Zambia on 14 November, ahead of the return leg which is set to be played at the Air Defense Stadium in Cairo, which was cleared by FIFA to host the match, despite the GFA’s request for it to be moved to a neutral venue due to safety concerns.
Ghana have decided to train in Turkey ahead of the reverse qualifier against Egypt, and are expected to arrive in Cairo on November 18, which is only 24 hours before the match is to be played at the Air Defense Stadium.
Kwasi Appiah’s 24-man squad – who have one foot in Brazil after handing the Pharaohs one of their worst defeats in history – is entirely foreign-based, with only seven players not plying their trade in Europe.
Bob Bradley will likely lead the Egyptian national team for the last time in Cairo, unless the Pharaohs can pull off a miracle to turnaround a 6-1 scoreline which thrashed them in the first leg of the World Cup play-off tie in Kumasi on October 15.
Midfielders: Mohamed El-Nenny (FC Basel, Switzerland), Ibrahim Salah (Al Orouba, Saudi Arabia), Hossam Ghaly (Lierse, Belgium), Mahmoud Abdel-Moneim ‘Kahraba’ (FC Luzern, Switzerland)
Forwards: Mohamed Nagy ‘Gedo’ (Hull City, England), Mohamed Salah (FC Basel, Switzerland), Amr Zaki (Al-Salmiya, Kuwait).
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