File photo of Amr Warda (the player's official Facebook page)
Greek club AE Larisa announced on Tuesday that they were parting ways with their on-loan Egyptian winger Amr Warda for disciplinary reasons.
“By personal decision of the President of AEL, Mr. Alexis Kougia, the loan players from PAOK and Olympiakos, Amr Warda and Giannis Masouras, are put out of the team for serious disciplinary offenses,” said a statement on the club’s official website without disclosing any details; however, the club president later said that Warda was being dismissed for missing recent training sessions without permission.
The 26-year-old player joined Larissa for one season on loan last August from PAOK after a reported dispute with his club management.
He spent the second half of last season on loan to Greek side Atromitos after a feud with PAOK’s then-coach Razvan Lucescu. He scored two goals in 12 league appearances with Atromitos.
Before the current league suspension due to the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, Warda scored six goals in 22 league appearances with Larisa.
The former Ahly player, who has made 30 international appearances so far, began his overseas career on August 2015 when he signed a three-and-a-half-year contract with Greek club Panetolikos, on a free transfer from the Cairo giants.
Warda’s European football career has not been a stable one, with repeated accusations of him lacking commitment.
The player quickly reacted to Tuesday’s announcement by Larissa, denying being involved in any violations.
“It is just a conflict between the two clubs’ presidents [Larisa and PAOK]. Now I will return to PAOK normally,” he told Egyptian media early on Wednesday.
Warda was a member of the Egyptian national team which played in the 2018 World Cup and in the 2019 African Cup of Nations.
He was excluded from Egypt's camp at the Nations Cup at home for disciplinary reasons, after coming under fire over accusations of inappropriate behavior on social media. He was pardoned at the time by the football association, reportedly after pressure from his teammates, and made a public apology, but Egypt was eliminated from the prestigious tournament in the round of 16.
On Wednesday morning, Larisa president Alexis Kougia issued a statement revealing that missing recent training sessions was the main reason behind letting Warda go.
“I want to make it very clear why I decided to remove Warda and Masouras from AEL,” the president said in a statement on the club’s official website.
“For Warda, I decided to move him away from the environment of AEL, because out of the nine training sessions that the other players did after returning to active action, he appeared at two, without receiving any permission from the coach Mr. Grigoriou, team manager Mr. Mantziokas, or me.
“So, the reason for his departure was only this and everyone must understand, and first of all Warda, whom we improved his football and helped overcome all his personal problems.
“I would like to publicly thank Warda for the wonderful moments he offered us throughout the year and much more for the two messages he sent me late last night, in which he expressed his gratitude to me and to AEL for what we have offered him.
“Ward will always be in our hearts and we are waiting for him at some point to come back to us, but respecting our principles and the AEL idea.
“On Friday, when I am in Larissa, I will publish both of his messages,” he concluded.
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