BY JOE APU
AHEAD of the March 25th AFCON 2017 qualifier, Egypt on Monday called up only five top foreign-based players.
Egypt’s five-man short list is coming over one week after Eagles’ interim manager, Samson Siasia released a list of 21 for the game.
Egypt’s five foreign-based players include Roma of Italy winger Mohamed Salah, Mohamed Elneny (Arsenal-England), Ahmed Hassan Kouka (Sporting Braga- Portugal), Mahmoud Trezeguet’ Hassan (Anderlecht-Belgium) and Amr Warda (Panetolikos – Greece).
Coach Siasia’s list includes Goalkeeper Karl Ikeme, defenders Efe Ambrose, Elderson Echejile, Godfrey Oboabona, Kenneth Omeruo, Stanley Amuzie and Abdullahi Shehu.
Other are Arsenal and Manchester City wonder kids, Alex Iwobi, and Kelechi Iheanacho, Watford FC striker Odion Ighalo and West Ham United FC winger, Victor Moses who is staging a come back after injury sidelined him from most of the team’s matches in the last two years.
According to the ahram.com, an Egyptian website, a member of the Egyptian Football Association Ihab Liheta stated on Monday that the Pharaohs will commence three days of camping before their departure to Nigeria.
“Egypt’s national team will start a closed camp on 20 March, three days before traveling to Nigeria.”
He stated further that Argentinean coach Cuper, 59, has called up Roma rising Egyptian star Mohamed Salah, who was acknowledged for his performance against Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League last week.
Arsenal midfielder Mohamed Elneny, who began to book a regular place in the Gunners’ starting line-ups, has been called up by Cuper to take part in the game against Nigeria.
Egyptian winger Mahmoud Trezeguet’ Hassan who is on loan from Anderlecht will replace injured winger Mohamed Abdel-Shafi, who plays for Saudi side Ahly Jeddah, in the Pharaohs squad.
The Pharaohs final squad including local based players will be released later today.
Egypt is leading group G with six points, two ahead of second-placed Nigeria. Only the group winner is guaranteed automatic qualification for the 2017 Cup of Nations.