Fans allowed to attend Egypt's Nations Cup qualifier against Tunisia

Ahram Online, Tuesday 26 Aug 2014

A crowd ban will be temporarily lifted when Egypt host Tunisia in their second Group G game of the Nations Cup qualifiers next month

Egypt's national soccer team players (Photo: Reuters)

Egyptian fans will be allowed to attend the national team's Nations Cup qualifier at home to North African rivals Tunisia next month, the country's football association announced on Tuesday.

A lengthy crowd ban has been lifted on a few occasions since it was imposed in 2012 in the wake of a football tragedy that left over 70 fans killed in coastal city Port Said.

Cairo giants Ahly and Zamalek were forced to play the majority of their matches in African competitions behind closed doors due to lingering enmity between their die-hard supporters and security forces.

Last season's Egyptian Premier League competition was also devoid of fans.

There were concerns that Egypt, who enjoyed the support of their fans during their previous competitive games in the 2014 World Cup qualifiers, will have to play their Nations Cup qualifying matches behind closed doors.

However, the EFA said in a statement that the interior ministry had agreed to let the fans in when Egypt host Tunisia in their second Group G match on 10 September.

The Pharaohs, who missed out on the previous two editions in 2012 and 2013, open their qualifying campaign away to Senegal on 5 September. The group also includes minnows Botswana.

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