The EFA announced that the national team’s new coach will be named Monday, declining to state whether he was Egyptian.
The Pharaohs have been on the lookout for a new manager to succeed the hugely successful Hassan Shehata, who departed early this month by mutual consent following the team’s goalless draw at home to South Africa in the 2012 African Cup of Nations qualifiers.
Last week, EFA chairman Samir Zaher was quoted by the local press as saying that the new manager would be Egyptian amid reports suggesting that Ittihad El-Shorta’s Talaat Youssef and Maqassa’s Tarek Yehia are vying for the hot seat.
However, during a news conference on Wednesday, Zaher insisted that all possibilities remain open: “The EFA will settle on the new manager during the board of directors’ meeting next week. We are evaluating the CVs of more than 30 managers who said they were interested in taking the job. I would personally prefer to hire an Egyptian coach, because all the team’s achievements in history were made by Egyptian coaches such as Shehata and Mahmoud El-Gohary.”
Egypt’s hopes of reaching next year’s Nations Cup finals in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon are virtually over after they could only collect two points from their first four games in Group G.
The new manager’s task will be injecting fresh blood into a team branded “ageing” by many to prepare them for the 2014 World Cup qualifiers. Egypt have not qualified for the world’s biggest football event since 1990.
“We are out of the running for the Nations Cup but we will play the remaining two games against Niger and Sierra Leone to maintain our position in the FIFA ranking,” Zaher added.
Manuel Jose and Hossam Hassan, the coaches of Cairo giants Ahly and Zamalek respectively, have also been touted as possible candidates to take charge of the seven-time African champions.