CAF agrees to postpone Egypt’s Nations Cup qualifier against Central Africa

Hatem Maher, Saturday 11 Feb 2012

Egypt’s opening African Cup of Nations qualifier against Central Africa will be played on 30 June instead of 29 February

Bob Bradley
Egypt coach Bob Bradley

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has agreed on Saturday to postpone Egypt’s Nations Cup qualifier against Central Africa in the wake of the Port Said tragedy which left 74 fans killed and scores injured earlier this month.

The match was due to take place on 29 February but Egypt sought to reschedule it due to the country’s state of mourning following the disaster, which occurred when thousands of Masry supporters invaded the pitch following the end of an Egyptian Premier League game against Ahly.

CAF said the game would be held on 30 June.

“That decision will allow the technical staff to help the players mentally and physically overcome the consequences of that disaster, especially Ahly players who said they were not ready to represent the national team now,” Egypt’s goalkeeping coach Zaki Abdel-Fattah told Ahram Online.

A handful of Egyptian footballers, including renowned Ahly playmaker Mohamed Abou-Treika, vowed not to carry on playing unless the culprits of the tragedy were brought to justice.

Domestic football activities have been suspended for an indefinite period amid calls for the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) to cancel this season’s Premier League.

However, Abdel-Fattah said Egypt’s head coach Bob Bradley has decided to go ahead with the team’s training camp that will include two friendly games against Botswana and Kenya on 21 and 23 February respectively.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter: @AO_Sports)

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