Hossam Hassan faces reality check as Egypt falls to Croatia in Egypt Capital Cup Final

Ahram Online , Wednesday 27 Mar 2024

Croatia staged a remarkable comeback to defeat Egypt 4-2 in the Egypt Capital Cup final on Tuesday, handing newly appointed coach Hossam Hassan his first taste of defeat.

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Egypt lost to Croatia 4-2. Photo: Ahram

Nikola Vlasic canceled out in the 22nd minute Ramy Rabia's opener in the sixth minute. The 2022 World Cup Bronze medalists dominated the second half, with goals from Bruno Petkovic, Andrej Kramaric, and Lovro Majer in the 57th, 77th, and 87th minutes, respectively, securing the Cup.

Defender Mohamed Abdel-Moneim salvaged a late consolation goal for Egypt in injury time, marking his third goal in 25 games for the national team.

Hassan, appointed as the Pharaohs' coach in February, received a reality check following his successful debut against New Zealand last Friday.

Egypt started the match strongly, taking the lead after just six minutes when Mohamed Hamdy capitalized on a rebound from Trezeguet's free kick. Hamdy's low cross found an unmarked Rabia, who slotted home from close range for his third goal in 25 games for Egypt.

Egypt could have extended their lead moments later, with Mostafa Mohamed's shot hitting the post after breaking clear.

With Luka Modric dictating play in midfield, Croatia seized control of the game and equalized when Nikola Vlasic cut onto his left foot and scored in the roof of the net in the 22nd minute.

Croatia maintained their pressure and chances went begging as Petkovic, Vida and Pjaca squandered several opportunities.

Croatia continued to press forward, with Petkovic redeeming himself for an earlier miss by heading in a corner from Modric to give his team the lead in the 57th minute.

As Egypt pushed for an equalizer, they left gaps in defense that Croatia exploited. Substitute Andrej Kramaric capitalized on Mario Pasalic's free kick to extend Croatia's lead to 3-1, while Lovro Majer added a fourth with a superb strike from the edge of the area box.

Abdel-Moneim's late header narrowed the margin to 4-2 in stoppage time, but it was not enough to prevent Croatia from claiming victory in the Egypt Capital Cup final.

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

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