Egypt may face Senegal without friendly: Coach

Ahmed Abd El Rasoul , Saturday 9 Aug 2014

The Pharaohs coach hints his team might not play its friendly match against Ethiopia 30 August; hails Sporting Lisbon's winger Shikabala

Egypt's Mohamed Nagy Gedo (OBSCURED) celebrates after he scored his goal.(Photo:Reuters)

Egypt coach Shawky Gharib says his team may not play scheduled friendlies ahead of its Senegal clash in the 2015 African Cup of Nations (CAN) qualifiers.

The Pharaohs are due to be hosted by the Senegalese team 5 September in the qualifiers opener.

The Egyptians were slated to face Ethiopia in a friendly 30 August, but it seems they may forgo it.

"We may face Senegal without playing any friendly matches before the match. It won't be a problem for us as we played three friendly matches before and reached the best formation and playing style," coach Shawky Gharib said in a TV statement Friday night.

"We will start a 10-day training camp on 25 August in Aswan. We chose the Upper Egypt city as temperature there are the same as Senegal," he added.

Gharib hails Shikabala

Egyptian foreign-based players will join the national team camp 29 August, four days before the team flies to Senegal.

Gharib is full of praise of Egypt's winger Mahmoud Abdel-Razek 'Shikabala' for his recent performances with Portuguese club Sporting Lisbon.

"We are monitoring all the foreign-based players. Shikabala is currently delivering outstanding performances and defensive skills with Lisbon," he said.

The Pharaohs, currently under the helm of coach Gharib, have done well at the CAN, winning three times in a row in 2006, 2008 and 2010.

Now they are bidding for a return after missing the last two tournaments in 2012 and 2013. They will kick off their bid with the away clash against Senegal.

In the 2015 CAN qualifiers, Egypt play in Group G alongside Tunisia, Senegal and Botswana.

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