Venues

Cairo Stadium

Inaugurated in 1960 and originally named after late President Gamal Abdel-Nasser, Cairo Stadium is the favourite home for the national team and Cairo's leading clubs Ahly and Zamalek.

Although not the oldest venue in the country, it is by far the most popular, having hosted many memorable games and events. It is fondly called the "stadium of horror" by Egypt's passionate football fans.

It was packed to capacity almost nine years after it was opened, with Ismaily becoming the first Egyptian club to win the African Champions League after beating Englebert, now TP Mazembe, before a fervent home crowd in late 1969.

Ismaily's continental triumph marked the first of a series of glory days at the Cairo Stadium, which later became the officially designated home venue of Ahly and Zamalek, the country and the region's best supported outfits.

The stadium was home to Egypt's Nations Cup triumphs in 1986 and 2006 as well as a remarkable match in which the Pharaohs made it to the 1990 World Cup, with striker Hossam Hassan heading home in a decider against Algeria to send the fans into raptures.

The venue was renovated before the 2006 Nations Cup on home soil, becoming on all-seater 74,100-capacity stadium to be on par with modern safety standards. It used to accommodate up to 100,000 supporters.

Even when a bigger venue was built in Alexandria, the 86,000-seat Borg El-Arab, it hardly possessed the charm of its Cairo counterpart, which has been mainly shut in recent years for security reasons.

But Cairo Stadium is now ready again to welcome back the national team with open arms.

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