'Very strong' Egypt always competes for titles: Morocco coach Renard

Morocco's coach Herve Renard is readying for a tough test against the Pharoahs Sunday

Ahmed Abd El Rasoul , Saturday 28 Jan 2017,
Morocco's French coach Herve Renard smiles during a press conference on January 28, 2017, at the Port-Gentil stadium during the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations football tournament in Gabon. (AFP)

Morocco coach Herve Renard says strong opponent Egypt always competes for the African Cup of Nations title, expecting a difficult test against the Pharaohs who showed they have something to prove in Gabon.

The Pharaohs, who led Group D with seven points, will face Morocco, who finished second in Group C with six points, in the quarterfinals Sunday evening, with the winner playing either Tunisia or Burkina Faso in the semifinals.

"We know Egypt (the national team) well and we have studied them on all levels. It is a very strong team with a big reputation in Africa," Renard said in a press conference Saturday.

"Egypt's current performance at the tournament reflects that they returned back with something to prove.

"They always compete for the title only in any African tournament and Sunday's match will be very difficult," added the 48-year-old tactician who eyes winning a third Africa Cup of Nations crown. Renard won the trophy before as coach with Zambia and Ivory Coast in 2012 and 2015 respectively.

Historical rivalry

Egypt kept a clean sheet since the tournament start in Gabon, holding to a goalless draw in their opener against Mali, before beating Uganda and Mali respectively.

In Sunday's match, at Port-Gentil stadium, the Pharaohs will be trying to ending a 30-year jinx as their last win over the Atlas Lions was in 1986 at the African Cup semifinals.

"What happened in the past remains as history, but now the time and place are different," explained Renard.

"The last confrontation was in 2006 (a 0-0 draw at the African Cup) and all things for both sides are totally different now," he added.

Under Argentinean coach Hector Cuper, Egypt is seeking its first AFCON triumph since they won the last of their record seven titles in 2010 in Angola.

"I didn't meet or play against Cuper before, but I know him well and it will be an honor for me to play for the first time against this veteran coach," Renard concluded.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)


Short link:



  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.

More news

Group A W D L P
2 1 0 7
Burkina Faso
1 1 1 4
Cape Verde
1 1 1 4
0 1 2 1
Group B W D L P
1 2 0 5
1 1 1 4
1 1 1 4
1 0 2 3
Group C W D L P
2 1 0 7
1 2 0 5
1 0 2 3
0 1 2 1
Group D W D L P
3 0 0 9
2 0 1 6
0 1 2 1
Guinea Bissau
0 1 2 1
Group E W D L P
Cote d Ivoire
2 1 0 7
Equatorial Guinea
2 0 1 6
Sierra Leone
0 2 1 2
0 1 2 1
Group F W D L P
2 1 0 7
2 1 0 7
1 0 2 3
0 0 3 0