Javier Aguirre has called up 25 players for Egypt’s international fixtures against Niger and Nigeria in March with talisman Mohamed Salah, injured Ahmed Hegazi and a host of other European stars missing.
Salah and Hegazi were ignored to continue with their club ambitions, a decision a top official of the Egyptian Football Association revealed last month as Liverpool chase their maiden Premier League title in 27 years while West Bromwich Albion aim for an immediate return to the English topflight.
The Pharaohs, hosts of this year’s Africa Cup of Nations, will conclude their qualifiers for the continental tournament with a fixture against Niger on March 23 before locking horns with the Super Eagles in Asaba three days later.
Egypt lead Group J standings with a higher goal difference than second-placed Tunisia as they are both tied on 12 points from five matches while Niger trail with eight points as third and eSwatini sit at the base.
Arsenal midfielder Mohamed Elneny and Olympiacos forward Ahmed Hassan Kouka are notable names in the list dominated by home-based players.
Goalkeepers: Mahmoud Gennesh (Zamalek), Mahmoud Abou-Gabal (Smouha), Ahmed El-Shennawy (Pyramids), Amer Amer (Entag El-Harby).
Defenders: Omar Gaber (Pyramids), Mohamed Hany (Al Ahly), Ali Gabr (Pyramids), Mahmoud Alaa (Zamalek), Baher El-Mohamady (Ismaily), Ahmed Ayman Mansour (Pyramids), Karim Hafez (Kasimpasa), Ahmed Aboul-Fotouh (Smouha).
Midfielders: Amr El-Sulaya (Al Ahly), Mohamed Elneny (Arsenal), Tarek Hamed (Zamalek), Ali Ghazal (CD Feirense), Mohamed Nabil ‘Dunga’ (Pyramids).
Forwards: Ahmed Hassan Kouka (Olympiacos), Salah Mohsen (Al Ahly), Mostafa Mohamed (Tala’a El-Gaish).