Fiorentina's Salah among 9 foreign-based players called up by Egypt

Ahram Online , Monday 16 Mar 2015

Ahead of first Egyptian national team gathering since November, newly-appointed coach Hector Cuper starts his mission with a camp for the Equatorial Guinea friendly

Egypt's Mohamed Salah (Photo: AP)

New Egypt coach Hector Cuper has called up nine foreign-based players, including Fiorentina winger Mohamed Salah, for the Pharaohs' first training camp since the dismissal of former manager Shawky Gharib.

The winners of three successive Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) (2006, 2008 and 2010) will meet up next week for a 26 March friendly against Equatorial Guinea amid preparations for the 2017 AFCON qualifiers.

Egypt's last gathering was on 19 November when they lost 2-1 to Tunisia, ending their chances of qualifying for AFCON 2015. Gharib was sacked days after.

Argentinean coach Cuper, 59, took charge of the team this month in a three-year deal, showing ambitions of bringing the team back to its former glory.

"My goal is to build a new team for Egypt and make it capable of regaining its winning rhythm," Cuper said last week.

The former Valencia and Inter Milan coach, who has never before worked in Africa, added that his sufficient knowledge of Egyptian football and players would help him to adapt quickly.

Egypt were initially scheduled to play the friendly game in Dubai on 28 March but the date and the venue were changed.

The 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers are set to start in June, followed by the 2018 World Cup qualifiers in October.

The nine foreign-based players are as follows:

Ahmed Fathi (Umm Salal - Qatar), Ahmed Elmohamady (Hull City - England) and Mohamed Abdel-Shafi (Ahly Jeddah - KSA), Rami Rabia (Sporting - Portugal), Saleh Gomaa (Nacional de Madeira - Portugal) and Mohamed Elneny (Basel - Switzerland), Mohamed Salah (Fiorentina - Italy), Ahmed Hegazy (Perugia - Portugal) and Ahmed Hassan "Koka" (Rio Ave FC - Portugal)

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