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Egypt among second seeds for Africa Cup qualifying draw
March 09, 2013
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JOHANNESBURG: Record seven-time winners Egypt are among the second seeds for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying draw to be made in host country Morocco this weekend.

Egypt won the maiden edition of the premier African football competition in Khartoum 56 years ago and between 2006 and 2010 became the first nation to win three consecutive tournaments.

But the Pharaohs failed to even qualify for the Africa Cup in 2012 and 2013 as the effects of political upheaval in post-Arab Spring Egypt took its toll on football. Domestic football was shut down for a year from last February after post-match rioting in Port Said between fans of local club Al Masry and Cairo giants Al Ahly claimed 74 lives.

Most fixtures involving the national team were played in the Middle East and Ahly and other Egyptian clubs involved in CAF club competitions had to play behind closed doors for security reasons.

However, a win away to Guinea in a 2014 World Cup qualifier suggests a team of veterans like goalkeeper Essam Al Hadary and emerging talents like midfielder Mohamed Al Neny is on the rise again under American coach Bob Bradley.

Agence France-Presse

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