Outgoing coach explains Egypt's failure to reach Olympic Games

Ahram Online , Tuesday 15 Dec 2015

Hossam El-Badry
Egypt's U-23 outgoing coach Hossam El-Badry (Photo: Ahram)

Outgoing coach Hossam El-Badry said Egypt were not allowed to prepare well for the U-23 African Cup of Nations in Senegal, where they finished at the bottom of their group to miss out on a place at next year's summer Olympics.

The young Pharaohs, brimming with talent and boasting a number of regulars in Egypt's senior side, were held to draws with Algeria and Nigeria before slumping to a shock loss to Mali in their last group stage match.

Eventual winners Nigeria, runners-up Algeria and third-placed South Africa will be Africa's three representatives at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games.

Egyptian media published a report El-Badry had presented to the Egyptian Football Association to explain the disastrous outcome, citing seven reasons for the poor results.

"I requested many times to hold long training camps and this did not happen. They [EFA officials] kept telling me that they don't want any interruptions to the domestic league," El-Badry said according to the report.

"Consequently, we could not play strong friendly games and this did not allow us to fairly assess the players and choose replacements.

"Even during our brief training camps, we could not call up many players because of their commitments with their respective clubs and the senior Egypt team. This has obviously distracted them and they do not have the sufficient experience to be able to cope with all those commitments."

El-Badry also said the players did not have proper rest due to their club matches and pointed at what he called "the negative confidence" of others as one of the reasons for the poor displays in Senegal.

Egypt's participation at the 2012 London Games, where they reached the quarter-finals before losing to Japan at Old Trafford, was their first since the 1992 Games in Barcelona.

El-Badry, 55, won with Cairo giants Ahly the Egyptian league and the African Champions League. He also steered El-Merreikh to the Sudanese league title.

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