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Nigeria game will be tough, says Egypt Olympic team coach

After the Nigeria clash, the young Pharaohs will play Mali three days later

Ahram Online , Tuesday 1 Dec 2015
Egypt Olympic team
Egypt Olympic team with coach Hossam El-Badry during a training session in Sharm El-Shiekh on Friday, Nov 20, 2015 (Photo: Ahram Sport)
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Egypt's U-23 manager Hossam El-Badry said he is wary of the strong Nigeria, before they meet on Wednesday in the second game of the U-23 Africa Cup of Nations.

"The Nigeria match will be tough as both teams combine very skilled and talented players and because it's the second game of the tournament," the 55-year-old tactician told the Egyptian Football Association official website on Monday.

After a 1-1 draw against Algeria on Sunday in the opener, the former Ahly manager believes that his side still have a chance in the competition as there are two games remaining in the group phase.

"We need to win the game to keep our hopes of reaching the semi-finals alive in an attempt to win it and snatch the Rio ticket," El-Badry added.

Mahmoud Kahraba gave Hossam El-Badri's side the lead nine minutes after the break, before Zeinedine Ferhat drew the Desert Foxes level in the 68th minute.

"We are working on the players' morale, setting motivations for them so they can close the Algeria game file," he said.

After Nigeria, the young Pharaohs will play Mali three days later.

The top two teams in each group will qualify for the semis in the eight-team tournament.

The first three teams in the final round will represent Africa in the upcoming Olympic games in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil.

Having qualified for the 2012 London Olympics after finishing third in the 2011 Morocco Cup of Nations - the inaugural edition of the continental tournament - the Pharaohs will be eyeing a similar top-three finish in the Senegal edition.

The other group includes hosts Senegal, South Africa, Zambia, and Tunisia.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)

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