'We all believe we're able to beat Russia,' says Egypt’s Elneny

Ahram Online , Monday 18 Jun 2018,
Egypt's Mohamed Elneny controls the ball during the group A match between Egypt and Uruguay at the 2018 soccer World Cup (AP)

Egypt and Arsenal midfielder Mohamed Elneny said on Monday that the Pharaohs are fully focused on Tuesday’s clash against Russia in the World Cup, adding that all players are confident that they will win the game.

Following their 1-0 loss to Uruguay in the group opener, Egypt have to avoid a loss against Russia to keep their hopes alive in continuing in the World competition.

Egypt are in third place of their group with zero points, three behind leaders Russia, “which is the most difficult and most important for us. But all the guys are in good shape and high spirits. We all believe that we're able to beat them," Elneny told FIFA's official website on Monday.

The 26-year-old has admitted that the seven-time African champions' mission against Russia will not be easy, with the latter seeking to capitalize on the home advantage. He asked his teammates to keep "calm" and "focused" during the game.  

"We realise that this will be a very tough game against a host nation supported by thousands of Russian fans. We are well aware of that, but we have no option other than to win, which means we need to keep our calm and focus," Elneny said.

The former Basel midfielder revealed that Egypt will play on Tuesday with an offensive approach, as they were eying a positive result against the hosts.

"That is coach Hector Cuper’s plan. He always instructs me and other players to activate the attack and move forward to support our colleagues."

"In the match against Russia, we will go for it because we want to stay here for as long as we can. To play in a World Cup and experience this atmosphere is a dream you hope will never end."

 (For more sports news and updates and a special World Cup 2018 coverage, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports )

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