Egypt coach: Zamalek can advance in CAF Champions League

Eslam Omar, Sunday 21 Apr 2013

Bob Bradley says strong performance by Egyptian clubs in African tournaments can boost Pharaohs' World Cup preparations

Bob Bradley
Egypt's head coach Bob Bradley of the U.S. (Photo: Reuters)

National team manager Bob Bradley has said he hopes the four Egyptian clubs participating in continental competitions can continue their success because it will boost the Pharaohs' World Cup bid.

"Bradley watched Zamalek's clash with Ethiopia's Saint George and he is not worried about the second leg," goalkeeping coach Zaki Abdel-Fattah told Reuters on Sunday.

Zamalek have a tough test in the away match in the Champions League round of 16 after they were held 1-1 at home on Saturday.

"Bradley thinks Zamalek are capable of winning and qualifying for the group stage," Abdel-Fattah said.

"Zamalek and Ahly advancing in the Champions League is really important for the national team," he added.

Ahly are being hosted by Bizertin of Tunisia on Sunday in the same round.

"The advance of Ismaily and ENPPI in the CAF Confederation Cup is also a good boost for Egypt as domestic games are not enough in our preparation for the World Cup qualifiers," the former United States goalkeeping coach added.

Ismaily and ENPPI failed to secure first-leg leads in their last-16 clashes on Friday, drawing nil-nil with Sudan's Ahli Shandi and South Africa's Supersport respectively on Friday.

The Pharaohs, who are bidding to reach the World Cup for the first time since 1990, have made a perfect start to their qualifying campaign, collecting nine points from three games.

They are five points ahead of Guinea and seven clear of third-placed Mozambique with three matches remaining. Egypt face Zimbabwe and Mozambique in two away games on 9 and 16 June respectively.

"We will be starting a closed training camp on 2 June, two days before we play Botswana in a friendly," Abdel-Fattah said, denying any talks had been held with the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) regarding a friendly with Ethiopia on 25 May, as local reports had claimed.

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