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La Liga opens first Egyptian football academy
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La Liga opens first Egyptian football academy

Cairo, Sep 17: La Liga on Monday presented its first football academy in Egypt, which aims to bring new talent to Spanish clubs and guide them on a similar path as Egypt and Liverpool star Mohamed Salah.

The new academy has been up and running for just one week and has already enrolled 75 students, the director general of La Liga in the Middle East and North Africa, Fernando Sanz, told EFE.

“Egypt is a big country, with a passion for soccer,” Sanz explained. “That’s why we’ve opened (an academy) here, in order to give young people the tools they need to play in the Spanish league.”

The former Real Madrid and Malaga player asserted that La Liga is the “most followed” football league in Egypt.

He added that students would learn the unique Spanish style of play, which depends on possession and short passes, at the academy located in the suburb of New Cairo, east of the capital.

La Liga has similar academies in the United Arab Emirates, India, Indonesia, and the United States, and is currently planning to inaugurate an academy in Jordan.

Currently nominated for FIFA’s best men’s player award, Salah is known for his humble beginnings in a small village in the Nile Delta and made his European debut with Swiss club FC Basel after playing in Egypt’s top league.

Forty percent of Egypt’s 100 million people are under the age of 18, the country’s state statistics agency reported in 2017.

Mohammad Salah Sergio Ramos
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Mohammad Salah Furious With Egyptian FA

Liverpool star Mohammad Salah is furious with the Egyptian Football Association as the board continues to ignore his messages.

The problems between Salah and the Egyptian FA continues.

Salah has also spoken out against the board in the past about stemming from an image rights issue earlier in the year. The problems began to increase when they promoted pictures of him alongside controversial Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov. And being  made an honorary citizen of the republic.

Earlier, last month, EFA executive manager Tharwat Sweilem denied talk of an issue with the player after Salah said there “needs to be change” with the national team.

The Liverpool star is due to be back in international action under new coach Javier Aguirre next month. Egypt will soon face Niger in a 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier. But Salah’s participation now could be in doubt as he questioned the EFA on social media on Sunday.

Salah tweeted on Sunday:
“It’s normal that a football federation seeks to solve the problems of its players so they can feel comfortable. But in fact, what I see is exactly the opposite. It is not normal that my messages and my lawyer’s letters are ignored. I do not know why all this [is happening]? Do you not have time to respond to us?!”

FIFA World Cup 2018

Meanwhile, Ramy Abbas Issa, Salah’s representative also lost his cool and expressed his view on social media.

“Enough is enough. We asked for guarantees regarding Mohamed’s wellbeing whilst with the national team. And assurances that the image rights violations wouldn’t happen again. That’s all. They have yet to respond.”

While on the other side, Salah’s Liverpool are off to a flyer in the Premier League with three wins in a row. Salah scored two goals in three matches and keeps becoming hero at the Anfield.

Thierry Henry
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Thierry Henry Denies Report About Taking over Egypt National Team

Thierry Henry, who is currently the assistant coach of Belgium has denied reports about taking over Egypt or Aston Villa.

It means the world has to wait a little bit more to see the France legend as a manager.

Some reports suggested Henry was set to become Egypt’s manager.

The former Arsenal player was the assistant of Belgium during the FIFA World Cup 2018 in Russia. He had a successful campaign, as the red devils were the semi-finalist. They were only one step away from lifting the World Cup but Henry’s country France broke the dreams of Belgium.

Some reports claimed Thierry Henry already had discussions with the Egypt management and he was ready to take the job. But on his Twitter account on Thursday, Henry said he is yet to hold talks regarding any job.

“Since announcing my decision to leave my full time role in broadcasting to pursue my ambition of becoming a manager, I have subsequently been linked with a number of positions both domestically and internationally. Contrary to misleading reports people may have read… at this moment neither myself, nor my advisers have held any discussions with any club or national association. My intention has always been to be patient, and I will take my decision in good time.”

Thierry Henry
Thierry Henry has denied reports of taking over the as manager of Egypt.

However, Henry has shown interest in becoming a manager in the past as well. And becoming the assistant of Belgium was the start of his managerial career. In a press conference last month, Henry said,

“Over the last four years I have had some extremely rewarding coaching experiences in football. These experiences have only made me more determined to fulfil my long-term ambition to become a football manager.”

Before taking the role of assistant coach, Henry worked as a pundit on Sky Sports.

Thierry Henry
Thierry Henry is likely to be Egypt's coach.
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Thierry Henry Likely to Become Head Coach of Egypt

France legend Thierry Henry, who had a fantastic run with Belgium as an assistant coach has been offered the managerial role of the Egypt national team.

Thierry Henry’s Belgium lost against his country France in the semi-final of the FIFA World Cup 2018.

Henry was only one step away from lifting the World Cup once again and for the first time as an assistant coach. But his country France knocked out the Belgium red devils in the semi-final in Russia.

According to the player’s agent, Nader El-Sayed, Henry got offered the coaching position of Egypt national team. And the Frenchman is likely to accept the offer and start his managerial career. El-Sayed told local media,

“We had a meeting with Thierry Henry’s agent in London, and [Egyptian FA board member] Hazem Emam was present, Henry is waiting [to hear about] the EFA’s project for the team before deciding on the offer. That is apart from the economic aspect.”

Hector Cuper was the manager of Egypt during the World Cup. The manager’s job was at stake soon after Egypt lost all the matches in the group stage. He was also heavily criticised for not bringing Mohamed Salah in the second half of their first game against Uruguay.

Cuper’s men lost the match 1-0 after Uruguay scored a goal in the dying minutes.

Thierry Henry
Thierry Henry

There had been rumours that former Mexico and Japan boss, Javier Aguirre is likely to replace Cuper. But El-Sayed has denied and said there had been no contact between them.

“The Mexican coach was one of the candidates. However, the EFA haven’t contacted me over him. If EFA decides to contact with another agent for Aguirre, I’ll have to respond.”

Egypt lost 1-0 against Uruguay, 3-1 against hosts Russia and 2-1 against Saudi Arabia in their last match of the FIFA World Cup 2018.

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World Cup: Saudi Arabia pip Egypt in final Group tie

Volgograd (Russia), June 26: Saudi Arabia ended their FIFA World Cup 2018 campaign on a winning note, edging past Egypt 2-1 in their final Group A game at the Volgograd Arena here on Monday.

With the dead rubber inching towards a 1-1 draw, Saudi’s Salem Al Dawsari struck in the additional injury time to help his side notch up their only win in the tournament.

Earlier, Mohamed Salah found the back of the net in the 22nd minute to hand Egypt an early lead in the game.

However, Saudi’s Salman Al Faraj equalised, scoring minutes before the half-time.

The game saw Egypt keeper Essam El Hadary make World Cup history when he became the oldest player to appear in the final stage aged 45 years and five months.

Hadary saved a first half penalty from Fahad Almuwallad and produced several excellent stops in the second half but could do nothing to prevent Alburayk’s late finish.

Having lost both of their opening two clashes, Saudi Arabia and Egypt’s World Cup journey ended on Monday.

FIFA World Cup 2018
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FIFA World Cup 2018: Mohammed Salah Fit to Play against Uruguay

Egypt have got a massive boost ahead of the FIFA World Cup 2018, as their leading man, Mohammed Salah is 100% fit to play against Uruguay.

Head coach, Hector Cuper confirmed it in a press conference on Wednesday.

Salah was in serious doubt for the FIFA World Cup 2018 after he injured his shoulder in the Champions League final against Real Madrid.

But Cuper gave delighting news ahead of their opening clash,

“Salah is doing very well. Indeed, he’s recovered very quickly. We’ll see how it goes today. I can almost assure you 100 per cent he’ll play. We’re trying to make him feel confident. The doctors are giving him the option to play or not. I know him very well, and I’m sure he’s not afraid.”

The coach also said he would be cautious with his leading man,

“A risk of playing a match is something we can’t hide. In terms of him on the pitch, he’ll have full guarantees. If we do see at the last minute there’s an issue; we’ll see if it can be resolved.”

Salah had worked tirelessly in an effort to get himself back to match fitness in time. Some training sessions have seen him working alone with medical and coaching staff.

Mohammed Salah

Cuper revealed it all in the press conference,

“Salah has three training sessions per day. He does training with the doctors, by himself and with specific exercises. He’s recovered from his injury, but he still trains a lot. He has to do physical training and mental training. Why? That’s what he feels he needs to recover.”

The head coach has high hopes from EPL’s top scorer,

“He could be the top scorer and one of the greatest players. He’s shown he’s got great personality, talent and character. No-one thinks he can’t [be top scorer]. We’ll see great players here, and he can be the greatest player [of all] at this World Cup.”

Egypt will face the two-time World-Cup winners Uruguay, and they have to give it all if they are to create upset.

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Uruguay focused on first game against Egypt as team departs for Russia

Montevideo, June 10: Uruguay’s captain Diego Godin said the players were focused on their first game against Egypt as the national team flew out from Montevideo for the FIFA World Cup in Russia, which kicks off on June 14.

Godin said the team was focused on their first challenge, which will be to beat an Egyptian team likely to be missing talisman Mohamed Salah, who is recovering from a shoulder injury sustained in the Champions League final last month against Real Madrid, reports Efe.

“Although we, like the whole of the Uruguayan people, are dreaming big, the main challenge facing us is winning the game against Egypt; this is what’s most important to us and is what is on our minds”, the Atletico Madrid man said.

Godin added that the team’s “first main objective” was qualifying from the group stages.

Thousands of fans gathered at Carrasco international airport outside the Uruguayan capital to see off the players, something which Godin was thankful for.

“Emotion, pride, I am really thankful to them”, the captain said. “I do not remember a sending off like this one, it’s something really beautiful, it’s something that we have built and generated ourselves, and we must make sure we continue to feed it every day”.

Uruguay are in Group A alongside the hosts Russia, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Mohammed Salah
Mohammed Salah would be be playing in FIFA World Cup 2018 even if he's in pain, says Dejan Lovren.
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FIFA World Cup 2018: Mohamed Salah Ready to Play Through Pain at World Cup – Dejan Lovren

Dejan Lovren has delivered a statement regarding Mohamed Salah which will be nothing less than music for the Egypt superstar’s fans.

The Croatia international said Salah is ready to play through the pain barrier to lead Egypt’s World Cup charge this summer in Russia.

Salah is currently in Spain, recovering from the shoulder injury he suffered during the Champions League final against Real Madrid nine days ago.

He had hurt his shoulder in a clash with Sergio Ramos. Salah was grappling with Ramos, and he landed awkwardly. He got up and tried to play on but could not. It later got revealed he had a suspected dislocated shoulder.

FIFA World Cup 2018: Mohamed Salah Ready to Play Through Pain at World Cup - Dejan Lovren 9

On Sunday, he handed a huge boost, by tweeting a picture of himself with the caption “good feelings” before it got confirmed on Monday that he was part of Egypt’s 23-man squad for the tournament.

And now Lovren has further boosted the hopes by delivering an encouraging message.

The defender is one of the 25-year old’s closest friends at Liverpool, and speaking at Anfield after Croatia’s international friendly with Brazil, he too suggested Salah would be fit for the World Cup.

“I’m positive,” Lovren smiled. “I have some news, but I will keep it to myself!

“I haven’t spoken to him a lot. But hopefully, he can be fit for the World Cup. Because I know, it means a lot to him to play for his national team.”

Egypt starts their campaign against Uruguay on June 15.

It looks likely that Salah would miss his country’s opener. However, he should be fit for the clash against Russia on June 19.

“Mo is the type of player who wants to play even when he feels pain,” Lovren said. “He showed that this season. There were a couple of games where people didn’t know [he was in pain], but in the end, he scored a hat-trick or whatever!

FIFA World Cup 2018: Mohamed Salah Ready to Play Through Pain at World Cup - Dejan Lovren 10

“Of course it was disappointing for him that he couldn’t finish the game in Kiev, but he’s positive, and hopefully he can move on and play for the national team,” he added.

As for Croatia, they have their task cut out at the group stage. They will be up against Argentina, Nigeria and Euro 2016 sensations Iceland in Group D.

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Egypt forward Salah’s absence won’t change Uruguay’s plans: Tabarez

Montevideo, June 5: Uruguay have not changed their preparations for the team’s opening FIFA World Cup match against Egypt despite the likely absence of Mohamed Salah, the former champions’ coach Oscar Tabarez said.

Salah has been given little chance of playing in the June 15 fixture in Yekaterinburg, Russia’s fourth largest city, as he recovers from a shoulder injury, reports Xinhua news agency.

“Because of his characteristics, you need to take care about how you occupy spaces,” Tabarez told reporters on Monday.

“But I think that changing all of our preparations for that reason (Salah’s probable absence) is over the top. We don’t even know for sure if he is going to play or not. If he plays, we will have to take precautions because of his very high level.”

Salah was one of the most prolific forwards in Europe last season, scoring 44 goals and laying off 16 assists for Liverpool across all competitions.

Last October, the 25-year-old became a national hero by converting a 95th-minute penalty to send Egypt to the World Cup for the first time since 1990.

But his availability for the tournament was plunged into doubt when he was forced off during Real Madrid’s 3-1 defeat of Liverpool in the Champions League final on May 26.

Egypt’s national team medical staff subsequently said the forward’s absence “would not exceed three weeks”.

Mohamed Salah Footballers
Mohamed Salah is in line to get fit ahead of the FIFA World Cup 2018 in Russia. Image Credits: Getty Images
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FIFA World Cup 2018: Recovering Mohamed Salah Feeling Good Ahead of Showpiece Event in Russia

Egypt’s talisman, Mohamed Salah is inching closer to recovering from his shoulder injury with every passing day, as the African country earnestly awaits the good news.

The Liverpool star is in a race against time to be fit for Egypt’s World Cup campaign.

Salah was a huge doubt for the showpiece event in Russia after being forced to leave the Champions League final in tears.

He had hurt his shoulder in a clash with Sergio Ramos. Salah was grappling with Ramos, and he landed awkwardly. He got up and tried to play on but could not. It later got revealed he had a suspected dislocated shoulder.

FIFA World Cup 2018: Recovering Mohamed Salah Feeling Good Ahead of Showpiece Event in Russia 11

Salah arrived in Spain last week for treatment on his damaged shoulder and had been assessed by Egyptian national team doctors.

In his latest update on social media on Sunday, Salah posted an encouraging tweet, posting a picture of himself while doing strength and conditioning session, with the caption:

“Good feelings…”

Earlier this week, the Egyptian Football Federation announced that Salah is likely to play a part in the World Cup.

A statement released by the EFA on their official social media channels read:

“After the meeting of Abo Rida (EFA President) and the doctor of the national team in Spain today, the Football Association reaffirms that God willing, Salah’s absence at the World Cup will not exceed three weeks.”

Missing his services will be a huge blow for Egypt. Salah was in stunning form before suffering the injury, netting 44 times across a remarkable 2017-18 campaign with Liverpool.

The goal-laden season helped him bag the Premier League Golden Boot and PFA Player of the Year award.

Egypt starts their campaign against Uruguay on June 15. Reports suggest Salah is likely to miss that encounter. However, he should be fit for the clash against Russia on June 19.