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Egypt’s U-20 team: Players to watch

Ahram Online's picks for the three most promising players in Egypt’s squad for the U-20 World Cup in Colombia

Hatem Maher , Friday 29 Jul 2011
Egypt's youth team

1-Ahmed El-Shenawy (Masry)

Masry goalkeeper Ahmed El-Shenawy is already tipped to become the successor of Essam El-Hadary, widely regarded as the best shot-stopper in Egypt’s history.

He rose to prominence with some solid displays as Egypt finished third in the African Youth Championship in South Africa earlier this year, where he also won the fair play award.

On the club level, El-Shenawy overtook Amir Abdel-Hamid as Masry’s regular keeper and played a key role in the team’s revival in the second half of the Egyptian Premier League season.

Ahram Online chose him in the Egyptian league’s best starting XI earlier this month.

2-Mohamed Salah (Arab Contractors)

Deep-lying forward Mohamed Salah has become one of the most sought-after players in the Egyptian league despite the relegation of Arab Contractors to the second division.

The skilful player attracted interest from several clubs after producing a string of impressive displays. The 19-year-old was lauded for his trickery, which helps him elude challengers with catchy feints.

He also made a fine impact at the African Youth Championship, but was let down by his failure to apply finishing touches on a number of occasions.

3-Mohamed Ibrahim (Zamalek)

Zamalek’s diminutive attacking midfielder Mohamed Ibrahim burst onto the scene under the team’s former coach, Hossam Hassan, last season.

He established himself as a regular starter and scored two superb league goals.

He notched Zamalek’s crucial stoppage-time winner over Masry in November last year when he collected a pass just inside the opponent’s half, sidestepped two defenders and surged to the edge of the area before sending a superb shot past the keeper with the outside of his right foot.

Another solo effort saw Ibrahim, who forged a fine partnership with Salah at the African Youth Championship, score another brilliant goal in Zamalek’s 3-1 win over Ittihad El-Shorta last month.

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