Egypt lines up Djibouti, Malawi friendlies ahead AFCON qualifiers
Determined to qualify for the 2017 African Nations Cup ahead of Nigeria, Egypt have intensified their preparations for the qualifiers slated for June.
The Pharaohs new coach, Argentina’s Hector Cuper, says his immediate plan is to re-launch the North Africans into the top echelon of African football beginning with the Gabon 2017 qualifiers.
Egypt won the African Nations Cup consecutively in 2006, 2008 and 2010, but since then they have not qualified for the continent’s showpiece event. Aside the Nations Cup, the last time the Pharaohs made the World Cup was in 1990. This is the situation Cuper says he wants to change.
According to a report by english.ahram.org.eg, the Egyptians are scheduled to play two friendly games against Djibouti and Malawi as part of their preparations for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nation (AFCON) qualifiers.
“The Egyptian Football Association (EFA), under the leadership of Gamal Allam, asserted that the associations have reached an agreement to play two friendly games ahead of AFCON qualifiers,” the EFA stated on their official website yesterday.
The Pharaohs will play Djibouti on May 21, before they meet Malawi on June 8.
The record holders of seven AFCON trophies have been drawn in group G of the 2017 qualifiers alongside Nigeria, Tanzania and Chad.
They will kick-off their bid on June 14 against Tanzania.
Egypt, under Cuper, will hold two training camps; one between June 18 and 21 and another between July 7 and 14.
Cuper’s first challenge will be to bounce back into Africa’s football elite after three failed attempts in a row, though the ultimate aim is to achieve the long-held dream of qualifying for the World Cup, a moment Egyptians haven’t experienced since 1990.
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