Egypt coach Cuper unconcerned with friendly losses to Portugal, Greece

Ahram Online , Tuesday 27 Mar 2018

Soccer Football - International Friendly - Egypt vs Greece - Stadion Letzigrund, Zurich, Switzerland - March 27, 2018 Egypt coach Hector Cuper before the match REUTERS

Egypt coach Hector Cuper said on Tuesday he is satisfied with his side's training camp in Switzerland despite two losses, saying the friendly games were important to test new players.

The Pharaohs slumped to a 1-0 loss to Greece on Tuesday, four days after throwing away their lead to suffer a 2-1 defeat by European champions Portugal after conceding two goals in stoppage time.

"I am very satisfied with the Swiss training camp," Argentinean boss Cuper told ONSport channel following the defeat against Greece.

"We were not good in the first half against Greece but we notably improved in the second in terms of spirit and aggressiveness.

"The two games were important for us to test new players before the World Cup especially that there is no much time before the tournament."

Cuper made wholesale changes against Greece, giving a chance to some fringe players and handing debuts to others.

Ismaily keeper Mohamed Awwad, Enppi playmaker Mohamed Magdi and Emirati-based winger Hussein El-Shahat made their first international appearances.

Los Angeles FC defender Omar Gaber, Ahly duo Saad Samir and Hossam Ashour and Saudi-based winger Moemen Zakareya have also made rare appearances.

"In friendly games, it is important to test (new) players. We could have played with our regular line-up and won the game but it was not our priority. We have to test new players."

Egypt will begin their final training camp for the World Cup in May. They will meet Kuwait, Colombia and Belgium in their remaining three matches before the global showpiece.

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