North African guest nation Egypt have named their squad for the 2017 Mopani Copper Mines COSAFA Under-20 Championships to be played in Zambia from December 6-16. Egypt have been invited, along with Uganda, to add a different style to the Southern African championship and both will be excellent additions to the field.
Like most sides, Egypt are building towards the 2019 African Youth Championships and so have selected a squad of mostly 17- and 18-year-olds for the COSAFA tournament, players who will still be eligible in this age-group in two years’ time.
Top-flight ENPPI have supplied the most number of players with five, or a quarter of the squad, with three from Cairo giants Al Ahly and two from their great rivals Zamalek.
Egypt have been drawn in Group B at the COSAFA Under-20 Championships along with South Africa, Mozambique and Mauritius.
They will open their campaign against Mauritius on December 8 at the Arthur Davies Stadium in Kitwe, before a clash with Mozambique the following day at the Nkana Stadium.
They then back at Arthur Davies for a potential pool decider against South Africa on December 12.
Only the top team in each pool advances to the semifinals, along with the best-placed runner-up.
The Young Pharaohs have been a power on the continent at Under-20 level in the past, and have won the continental crown on four previous occasions, most recently in 2013. They have also been to eight FIFA Under-20 World Cups, with their best finish in 2001 when they picked up the bronze medal.
They will add an extra dimension to the COSAFA Under-20 Championships and provide a contrasting style for the competing teams. They will certainly be among the pre-tournament favourites.
Egypt squad: Mohamed Tarek, Mohamed Abdelmoneim, Mohamed Shokry (all Al Ahly), Mahmoud Abdalla (Ismaily), Hamada Farouk (Misr El Makassa), Ahmed Ghoneim (Smouha), Ahmed Youssef, Ahmed Kassem, Ahmed Elggohary, Khaled Basiouni, Abdelrahman Amr (all ENPPI), Mohamed Fakhry (Ghazl Elmahala), Mohamed Reda (Wadi Degla), Mohamed Karem (Assiouty), Mohamed Gamal, Mohamed Hany (both Arab Contractors), Mohamed Sobhy (Petrojet), Roshdi Ashraf, Hussein Feasal (both Zamalek), Mostafa Elzanary (Talaea El Gaish)