Zamalek striker Bassem Morsi said it was a ''surprise'' to be left out of Egypt's squad for next month's Africa Cup of Nations.
Although he has been a regular member of Egypt's squad since Hector Cuper took over in February 2015, the Argentinean coach opted to leave Morsi out of the Gabon finals.
Cuper instead named Ahly's striker Marwan Mohsen and Masry's top scorer Ahmed Gomaa as well as Sporting Braga frontman Ahmed Kouka in a 27-man preliminary squad for the Nations Cup.
"It was a surprise for me not to be included in the Nations Cup squad," Morsi told a radio program on Sunday.
"I have been a regular member of the Egypt team for the past two years. I hope that my teammates will do well in the tournament and I will do my best to regain my place in the squad."
Some reports said the 25-year-old was omitted for disciplinary reasons after allegedly venting his frustration at being substituted in the 2-0 World Cup qualifying victory over Ghana in November.
Other reports said his recent drop in form led Cuper to leave him out.
"My form? I scored 43 goals with Zamalek in 30 months and seven goals for Egypt during the same period."
"I'm the current Egypt leading scorer along with Mohamed Salah," he added.