Egypt football icon Mahmoud El-Gohary (Photo: Al-Ahram)
The Egyptian national team, under the leadership of American coach Bob Bradley, has offered its condolences to the family of legendary coach Mahmoud El-Gohary who died on Monday. El-Gohary's body arrived in Cairo on Tuesday in a Jordanian military aircraft ahead of a planned military funeral.
“I never met El-Gohary but what I heard about him is enough to make me agree that he is one of Egypt’s greatest footballers,” Bradley was quoted as saying by the official website of the Egyptian Football Association (EFA).
El-Gohary, who died aged 74, was one of the most popular footballers in Egypt. He coached the two biggest Egyptian clubs, Ahly and Zamalek, and led the Pharaohs to qualify for their last World Cup in 1990.
“His qualification for the 1990 World Cup is enough to make him great and we will dedicate qualifying for the 2014 tournament in Brazil to his memory,” added the 54-year-old coach.
Bradley, who is preparing the team for their World Cup qualifier against Zimbabwe in March, has postponed a training camp at the Borg El-Arab stadium in Alexandria so the players and coaching staff can attend El-Gohary's funeral on Tuesday.
The holders of seven African Cup of Nations trophies will play Benin and Cameroon in friendlies on 7 and 11 September.
The Pharaohs were knocked out of the first round of 2013 African Cup of Nations qualifiers after losing 4-3 on aggregate to the Central African Republic.
(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter: @AO Sports/ and Facebook AhramOnlineSports)