Cuper talks performances, tactics and future ahead of Saudi Arabia clash
Egyptian national team manager Hector Cuper spoke about his tactics, his players’ performances, and his future with the Pharaohs ahead the Saudi Arabia clash.
Egypt were knocked out of the World Cup early as they lost both of their matches in Group A to Uruguay and Russia.
The final round of the group will take place on Monday, June 25, and will see Egypt face Saudi Arabia for the third place, while Uruguay and Russia will battle out for the top spot.
Speaking about changing his squad for the Saudi Arabia game, Cuper said that he wants to try new players and that he will make several changes.
“To change the formation there must be a need for a change, a player should be out injured or unfit or not performing well,” Cuper said.
“I want to give all the players the chance to participate in the World Cup and I can say that we will change our playing style against Saudi Arabia.”
After the Russia defeat, rumors surfaced about tensions and conflicts in the Egypt camp, which Mohamed and the Egyptian Football Association denied.
Essam El-Hadary, who was accompanied by Cuper, was asked about the alleged conflict he was part of in the camp, but he was interrupted by the Argentinean manager.
“I want to answer this on behalf of El-Hadary. There are many rumors in football, especially about national teams,” Cuper said.
“If anyone has evidence that there were any conflicts in the camp, reveal it, if not, don’t ask these questions.
“There are disagreements in opinions, but that could happen anywhere. I won’t answer any questions about this again if there aren’t any evidence.”
Cuper then defended Egypt’s performance in the competition, saying they played well despite the two defeats.
“We suffered 12 hard minutes against Russia that cost us a lot. We paid for our performance deterioration against Russia,” he said.
“Against Uruguay, we were stable and generally better except for a couple of mistakes that we can solve to finish the World Cup with a good result.”
He added that he isn’t afraid of any physicality against Saudi Arabia as there is fair play between both teams and no one would want to intentionally hurt another player.
The Argentinian manager responded to his critics, saying that this is part of football and if you don’t want to face it then you should leave the sport.
“We discuss and analyze our mistakes as well as reconsider our strategies, but sometimes you have to admit that the other team were better,” he said.
“When we face a team that is good in crosses we face problems. Uruguay’s crosses were difficult and effective, and we did our best against Russia, who you shouldn’t undermine. We will not look at the past,” he added.
He concluded by saying that he is content with the team’s performance and that he doesn’t see any problems with Egypt’s attack.
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