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Egyptian National Team

Egypt boss Hector Cuper discusses strategy against Uganda

Hector Cuper

Photo by Aminah Babirye

Egypt head coach Hector Cuper spoke about the team’s offensive and defensive strategy against Uganda during the second round of Group D in the African Cup of Nations.

The Pharaohs managed to eliminate the Cranes from the competition in the final minutes of their encounter beating them 1-0.

Cuper spoke after the match to discuss Egypt’s match strategy. “Football is not only about offensive tactics, an offence must be executed in specific ways,” The Argentinian coach said in the post-match press conference. “All teams in the tournament are winning with one or two goal leads only. Matches in this tournament are hard and competition is fierce,” he added.

Regarding Egypt’s strategy and tactics in the match, he said: “There is a specific way for attacking and another for defending. Attacking does not mean that all players should just rush towards the opponent’s goal. Each match has its own special formation.”

Cuper concluded by thanking his players for fighting till the last minute of the game. “I hope we deliver better performances and score more goals in our next match.”

In addition to being a hardcore football fan, Abdelrahman is a communications enthusiast who works in marketing, advertising, content creation and PR.



  1. Yehya Asker (@YehyaAsker)

    January 22, 2017 at 6:33 PM

    Cuper just proved in this game that he is not a top coach and that he can’t adapt.

    It doesn’t need a genius to figure out that you have to have a more attacking formation against Uganda than Mali or Ghana for example. You can’t just always play with 4 defenders and two defensive midfielders (6 out of 10 field players) particularity against weaker teams. Weaker teams will feel more confident with this extra defensive formation. Almost all top teams in the world either play with 4 defenders and only 1 DM or 3 defenders and 2 DM. Only teams near the bottom of the leagues who try to scrap a point, play with this defensive formation.

    He made the change after 60 minutes but it should’ve came from the beginning of the game.

    We were very lucky to end up winning and it shouldn’t have been that close at all.

  2. Trika

    January 22, 2017 at 9:08 PM

    I disagree. The man knows his midfield isnt what it was back then with Aboutrika, Hosni, Barakat. He knows his current team and what they can do. Egypt since forever had an awful defense, the man came and changed just that and so far this has proved to be the change we needed because not only we arent losing but we’re actually not even conceding goals.

    Let the man work in peace, we’re finally on the right track to world cup.

    • Ahmed shousha

      January 22, 2017 at 11:27 PM

      I think I know what yehya means. He has a very good point of view, although cuper is one of the best tacticians there is in football ( he has world class tactics), he hasn’t exactly delievered too much with the Egyptian team but, that’s because his tactics call for time in order to work really and the time he has with the national team is not enough. I think without the 4 defenders we would be very terrible and the midfield is definitely not the best and it barley works and sometimes it doesn’t work at all. Aboutrika is an attaking midfield and we have really good attacking midfields. I think elneny just doesn’t really shine with the national team because as Egyptians we are used to and expect an attacking team but, this is 2017 football has evolved and our thought also need to evolve with it, I think elneny works his ass off and makes some mistakes, he doesn’t play like he does at arsenal but, he gets the job done just like Mohamed salah, we just expect more from elneny because he plays with arsenal, he does make a lot of mistakes but that’s because he hasn’t fully adapted with the national team, I think we should give him time and let him develop his chemistry with Egypt even though I miss the fc Basel elneny which was better.

      • Yehya Asker (@YehyaAsker)

        January 23, 2017 at 12:39 AM

        Ahmed, I agree with some of your points but there is no way anyone will consider Cuper a one of the best tacticians there is in football!!!!! Please remember, he is a coach who only once in his career (1 out of 13 teams he coached) had an above 50% winning percentage (and it was barely above 50 while he was coaching Inter which shouldn’t be that tough!).

        Alhamdulellah, he has been with Egypt so far but he is NOT one of the best tacticians there is in football. Not even close. I hate to put it this blunt, but we can’t afford them. Check Klopp, Conte, .. etc salaries. Let’s please not get above our heads here.

    • Yehya Asker (@YehyaAsker)

      January 23, 2017 at 12:20 AM

      With all due respect but we have a very good midfielders and it is by far the deepest line that we have. They maybe young but they are really good (Salah, Ramadan, Trezeguet, Kahraba, .. etc). Our weakness is clearly forwards (Salah is technically an attacking wing and not a pure striker even that he does score often). The formation (4-2-3-1) is very defensive which is fine against tough teams like Mali or Ghana, like I mentioned before, but its silly against teams like Uganda. Cuper himself changed the formation but after 60 minutes. The difference between great coaches and good coaches is that they can adapt and anticipate. I know the preparation (limited number of games) prior to the ANC is a factor but still. I expected much better game plan against a very weak team (and let’s not fool ourselves they are weak).

  3. ahmed

    January 23, 2017 at 1:15 AM

    Cuper is overdoing the defensive aspect of the game. While I don’t mind and actually like to see the whole team rush back on defense I also want the team to attack in numbers.

    The people praising him only the base of the result are doing the same mistake people who praised Bradley did. Given that the team does not look shaky like it did with Bradley, the point is that it’s only a question of time before the way he plays costs us.

    We sank pretty low in the past years and coupled with the fact that we faced team like Chad is the main reason he collected those wins. Teams like Ghana and Nigeria were selfish against us and attacked way too much causing the only attacking option Cuper have, the counter to work.

    Now that this is done and dusted and we are uncovered watch Ghana in the next game. They will without a doubt attack in a balanced style giving us no option on the counter and easily neutralize our 4 men attacks. The ball will be in their possession all game long and they will use that to maximize their chances creation. The main difference here is that you can sustain 90 minutes of crappy Ugandan and Malian attacks, but 90 minutes of Gyan, Atsu, J.Ayew, A.Ayew, Wakaso attacks ?

    The point here is that any team who will not defensively compromise themselves against us are guaranteed to at least draw. If we actually concede a goal this team begins to look much less attractive.

    I agree with how he plays it defensively, but when we have the ball at our feet its abysmal football that falls apart anytime you need a goal or a win.

    Say we reach the knockout stage…what is the gameplan ? Stretch each game all the way to penalties ?

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