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Is Egypt FA serious about challenging FIFA?


The views expressed in this article are those of KingFut columnist Hosam El-Aker and do not necessarily represent those of KingFut.

After initially deciding to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) over FIFA irregularities detrimental to Egypt’s 2018 World Cup qualifying chances, Egyptian football officials have reneged, choosing instead to simply send their complaint to FIFA itself, as well as African football governing body CAF.

This is like getting your home robbed, and then complaining to the robber himself instead of the police.

There is no explanation for not involving CAS, aside from remaining members of Egypt’s Football Association (EFA) – which recently resigned en masse – halting the move before it could get off the ground.

Which leads us to some of the same questions raised when we discussed FIFA’s part in this mess. Is Hany Abou Rida in cahoots with the robbing of Egypt’s Pot 1 status in World Cup qualifying?

OPINION | The stench of corruption: FIFA’s “special” ranking

Abou Rida is part of both the FIFA Council and CAF Executive Committee. He’s a confidant of Mohammed bin Hammam, a powerful ex-FIFA Executive Committee member and former Asian Football Confederation president who was banned by FIFA for his part in a bribery scandal that helped Qatar win its bid to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Abou Rida himself narrowly dodged a FIFA case by saying of his trip with Bin Hammam, on which bribes were distributed, that he “couldn’t understand” Caribbean Football Union chief Jack Warner when he told delegates to collect gifts.

The point is that there is no one else currently associated with the EFA that has anywhere near Abou Rida’s level of influence.

Is he somehow protecting his own interests? Someone else’s?

Clearly, someone on the inside is hiding something, and is at least tacitly complicit in FIFA’s unprecedented “special” ranking designed to replace Egypt with Tunisia in Pot 1.

The fact that outrage has been limited to ranking specialists and fans is one thing, but there simply is no other way to explain the combination of apathy and inaction on the EFA’s part.

On second thought, “inaction” is giving the EFA and Abou Rida too much credit… they seem to actually be proactive in preventing the case from going to CAS.

And just when we had a glimmer of hope that the EFA was getting its act together, or at least trying to right the ship…

This time frame before the June 24 group draw is a crossroads for Egypt’s World Cup qualifying campaign. One that is just as important as the match dates themselves. The reality, aside from impassioned declarations that “we shall overcome,” is that Egypt’s World Cup chances drop dramatically between Pot 1 and Pot 2. And yet, no sense of urgency from the people we need it most.

The EFA embarrassments continue to mount, and attempting to combat them all is getting very tiresome. It appears that corruption is so deep-rooted that it has not only penetrated every level of FIFA and CAF, but the EFA as well. It’s one thing to be undone by corruption from the outside, but the frustration and feelings of hopelessness when it comes from the very individuals who are meant to be fighting for Egypt’s rights simply cannot be put into words.



  1. Yehya Asker (@YehyaAsker)

    June 14, 2016 at 4:46 AM

    Excellent points and article. Thank you.

    Hopefully someone with some decency at EFA will read this and do something about it.

    Abou Rida is disgusting and either corrupt or an idiot and most properly both! Hugely disappointing!! Is he another Mubarak era leftover?

    • Santos

      June 14, 2016 at 9:02 AM

      It seems only non mainstream Egyptian media like KingFut are interested in fighting for Egypt’s rights.

  2. Joe Khalil

    June 14, 2016 at 8:45 AM

    Yes Mubarak is to blame.

    • Yehya Asker (@YehyaAsker)

      June 14, 2016 at 4:04 PM

      Please read the word “era” in my response and google it for definition if you don’t know what it means. It would have saved you the hassle.

  3. Joe Khalil

    June 14, 2016 at 8:48 AM

    One of the many many things that “only happen in Egypt” is appealing FIFA rankings. Its embarrasing. Just like how in Egypt you support the “ultras” and every where in the world they are banned.

    • Santos

      June 14, 2016 at 9:01 AM

      Are you really that retarded or just saying this to get a rise out of people? Perhaps some reading comprehension problems? Some of the biggest critics of this special ranking are non-Egyptians, and ranking experts.

      Then again, you’re the same asshat that had no idea how the FIFA Rankings even worked, as I recall from past comments.

    • gogi

      June 14, 2016 at 10:30 PM

      Complete nonsense. The Ultras in Egypt are peaceful, enthusiastic football fans. Far better than the dangerous Nazi hooligans in Germany, where I live. Or the Russians and Britains who had street battles in France. And of course it’s hard to accept a special FIFA ranking that seems to have only one purpose: lowering Egypt’s prospects to succesfully qualify for the World Cup.

  4. Leo

    June 15, 2016 at 8:32 PM

    Another Great Article (AGA) by Hosam El-Aker!

    Where did you get such great language skills?

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