Egypt coach rejects Colombia friendly

Ahmed Abd El Rasoul , Saturday 19 Apr 2014

The Pharaohs boss fears his players could be negatively affected by fatigue as they already have two friendly commitments, the first on 30 May and the other few days later

Shawki Gharib
Egypt national team coach Shawky Gharib (Photo: Al-Ahram)

Egypt coach Shawky Gharib has refused an offer to play a friendly match against Colombia on 7 June, state-run news agency MENA reported late on Friday.

Egypt's national team is set to play against Chile in a friendly match on 30 May in the South American country. The Pharaohs also are preparing for a second friendly against an unnamed team – the main reason for Gharib's rejection of Colombia.

"It was difficult to face Colombia on that date while we are preparing for another friendly match on 3, 4 or 5 June. The continental commitments of both Ahly and Zamalek players was also a reason to refuse the offer," Gharib was quoted as saying by MENA.

The Egyptian team has its first international commitment in September – the first round of the 2015 African Cup of Nations qualifiers.

The Pharaohs had their debut under new coach Gharib last month when they claimed a 2-0 win over World Cup finalists Bosnia in a friendly match in Austria.

Gharib replaced former coach Bob Bradley in November following the failure of the seven-time African champions to reach this year's World Cup finals in Brazil.

Under Gharib's helm, Egypt is hoping to usher in a new era of continental success, after the retirement of several figures from its golden era such as Mohamed Abou-Treika and Ahmed Hassan.

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