Question about Egypt coach Cuper draws angry response from national U-23 boss

Ahram Online , Friday 20 Nov 2015

Hossam El-Badry
Egypt's Olympic team coach Hossam El-Badry (Photo: Ahram)

Egypt's Olympic team coach Hossam El-Badry was visibly irritated after being asked by a television reporter over whether the presence of the Pharaohs' senior side boss Hector Cuper will motivate the players during the U-23 Africa Cup of Nations in Senegal, which starts later this month.

Argentinean coach Cuper, who helped Egypt qualify for the final group phase of the World Cup qualifiers following a 4-1 aggregate win over minnows Chad, will reportedly fly to Senegal to keep a close eye on the U-23 players, some of whom are already regular members of the senior team's squad.

"There is no relation between his [Cuper's] presence and the players being motivated or not, let's not mix things," former Ahly coach El-Badry, who is tasked with qualifying the U-23 team for next year's Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, told a TEN channel reporter.

"His presence might also put pressure on the players but he is free to attend the games if he wants to assess the players he wants to call up," he added, before refusing to discuss the matter further.

Egypt's Olympic team squad includes two key players in Ahly's Ramadan Sobhi and Zamalek's Mostafa Fathi. The latter was arguably Egypt's best player during the 4-0 rout of Chad on Tuesday in the second leg of the World Cup qualifying second round.

The U-23 side will play in Group B of the African Cup of Nations along with Algeria, Mali and Nigeria. The top three in the tournament will reach next year's summer Olympic Games.

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