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Egypt coach Bradley seeking Shehata's advice

Egypt’s new national coach, Bob Bradley, wants to glean advantage from his predecessor’s experience

Hatem Maher, Saturday 15 Oct 2011
Bob Bradley
Egypt's new coach Bob Bradley (Photo: AP)
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Egypt coach Bob Bradley said Saturday he intends to sit down with his predecessor, Hassan Shehata, to benefit from his experience.

American coach Bradley took over from Shehata, who is described by many as the best manager in the national team’s history, following Egypt’s failure to qualify for next year’s Afican Nations Cup finals in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.

Shehata steered Egypt to three consecutive African Nations Cup triumphs in 2006, 2008 and 2010 but failed to end the Pharaohs’ 20-year World Cup drought. Bradley is burdened with guiding Egypt to a place at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

“Shehata is a great coach who made many achievements with the Egyptian national team,” the former United States team tactician said in an interview with Ahram Daily.

“I spoke to him more than once and asked him for a meeting to benefit from his experience with the team. He welcomed my request and wished luck for the new technical staff.”

Debut against Brazil

Bradley will make his debut when Egypt face five-time world champions Brazil in an anticipated friendly in Qatari capital Doha on 14 November.

Asked whether he fears a heavy loss may affect his tenure, the 53-year-old boss underlined the importance of holding such high-profile matches.

“We have to face high calibre teams to improve our displays. I and the players will do our best to make a good impression and get a fine result.”

Bradley would not be drawn on the formation he intends to implement. Shehata used to deploy a traditional 3-5-2 strategy featuring a sweeper, a position which no longer exists in modern football.

“It’s difficult to make that decision now. Some high-profile national teams play with five defenders, others play with three forwards for instance,” he added. “We will use the formation that suits the team and the capabilities of Egypt’s players.”

Bradley was in the stands to watch Ahly’s Egyptian Premier League opener against Haras El-Hodoud on Friday.

“There are some players who caught my eyes, but I can’t name them now. We need some time to assess the performance of any player and know whether he can maintain his form,” Bradley commented.

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