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Egyptian FIFA official downplays Ghana request to play outside Egypt

Published on: 13 October 2013
Hany Abou Rida

An Egyptian member of the FIFA executive committee Hani Abou-Rida, an Egyptian, has downplayed Ghana's request for their World Cup playoff against Egypt to be played outside the country due to security concerns.

"This is psychological warfare against the national team and should be ignored. We should only focus on the match," Abou-Rida told the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) on Saturday.

The Ghana Football Association (GFA) sent a letter to FIFA last week demanding the second leg of the World Cup playoff on 19 November be played outside Egypt due to the country's difficult security situation.

"I don't like exaggeration. The EFA has already responded firmly and FIFA don't make their decisions based on media reports. I trust the ability of the Egyptian authorities [to secure the match]," he added.

FIFA has given Egypt until 28 October to provide "comprehensive security assurances" for the playoff second-leg, which is due to take place at the army-owned Air Defence Stadium in Cairo.

Former EFA vice-president Abou-Rida also expressed confidence that American manager Bob Bradley and his squad would earn a ticket to the world's most prestigious tournament after an absence of 24 years.

"I will always support the national team and help them whenever I'm asked," Abou-Rida concluded.

Egypt, which cancelled two successive football leagues due to security troubles, has been in turmoil since the army ousted elected president Mohamed Morsi on 3 July following mass protest against his rule.

The playoff first leg will take place in Kumasi on Tuesday.

Al Ahram


This article has 13 comment(s), give your comment
  • Tony says:
    October 13, 2013 05:56 pm
    Ghana defence should be smart and tight and the players should be strong and they shouldn't allow them controls the ball
  • Factual says:
    October 13, 2013 06:40 pm
    Boss,talk with facts. Ghana didn't send just a mere letter,it was a letter based on pure facts and it was sent in the right timing-at the peak of the riot. Your security men are being attacked and killed!!! Who is going to protect us and even you on the D day??!!
  • Don 1 says:
    October 13, 2013 07:40 pm
    That so called Abdou can downplay the contents of the letter but he should know he cannot downplay the security of humans especially Ghana's world-renowned players. No one ever thought egypt will ever be in this chaos but it has happened and continuing happening so Abdou shut up and do the right thing to safeguard our players instead of talking blah blah
  • obele says:
    October 13, 2013 08:14 pm
    Massa the game will be played in a neutral venue. We don't want to be part of your problems period.
  • Josimar kwesi bonsu says:
    October 13, 2013 08:47 pm
    Mind Games ma Ass! The videos n the pictures of the riots n killings in Egypt,Let's jst finishd the first Leg den 2nd Leg venue wud sort its self,up ghana
  • khaled says:
    October 13, 2013 09:13 pm
    justice says that every team plays on its land but you want to play in ghana and don't want to play in egypt this is theft you will play in egypt and egypt in brazil isa.
  • United States of Africa(USA) says:
    October 13, 2013 09:13 pm
    Let's deal with the game in Kumasi first before we think of where the return leg will be played? GHANA 4:0 EGYPT.
  • GHANSON says:
    October 13, 2013 09:19 pm
    @USA I totally agree with your scoreline... GHA 4-0 EGY \\we shall even beat them in the return leg maybe by a goal to nil just to punish them
  • GHANSON says:
    October 13, 2013 09:25 pm
    Black Stars as at now are the most feared team in Africa....Not even Ivory Coast. .Reason?? Cuz our team is made up of nothing but goal poachers..We dont depend on 1 or 2 guys for goals..even defenders can score and thats why weve been able to beat ppl 7-1 on a number of occassions.. Younger players,marshalled by a couple of vets=high energy,agility,speed,accuracy, win GO BLACK STARS! VIVA GHANA!
  • United States of Africa(USA) says:
    October 13, 2013 09:37 pm
    Haa haa haaaa, and Egypt wept.
  • gard says:
    October 13, 2013 10:06 pm
    Final aggregate score. Ghana 5......1 egypt. Whether the return leg is being played in egypt or not .
  • Factual says:
    October 13, 2013 10:49 pm
    @gard: 5 goals spells E G Y P T. LOL
  • Factual says:
    October 13, 2013 10:51 pm