The Egypt national football team named their 22-man squad for Tokyo Olympics on Friday with star forward Mohamed Salah the biggest absentee.
The 29-year-old Salah was expected to be one of the three over-age players allowed to be included in Egypt’s squad for the under-23 tournament at Tokyo 2020. Mohamed El-Shennawy, former West Brom defender Ahmed Hegazy and Mahmoud Hamdy filled the three slots for the over-age players.
Mohamed Salah, a two-time African Footballer of the Year, last represented Egypt at the Summer Olympics at London 2012. The former Chelsea and AS Roma attacker scored in every group stage fixture -- three goals in all -- before drawing blank in the knockouts where Egypt lost to Japan.
Another prominent name to miss out on Shawky Gharib’s Egypt football squad for the Tokyo Olympics is Mostafa Mohamed.
On loan at Galatasaray from Egyptian club Zamalek, the striker was blocked from national duty as the Turkish giants are set to participate in the UEFA Champions League qualifiers. The 23-year-old Mostafa, who has nine goals in 17 appearances, is expected to play a decisive role for Galatasaray.
The Pharaohs, who qualified for the Olympics’ football event after winning the under-23 AFCON championship in 2019, have been drawn with two-time champions Argentina, 1992 winners Spain and Australia in Group C.
The football tournament at Tokyo 2020 is set to begin from July 21 till August 7.
Egypt football squad for Tokyo Olympics
Goalkeepers: Mohamed El-Shennawy, Mohamed Sobhi, Mahmoud Gad
Defenders: Ahmed Aboul Fotouh, Karim Fouad, Ahmed Hegazy, Mahmoud Hamdy, Mohamed Abdel Salam, Ahmed Ramadan, Osama Jalal, Karim Al Iraqi
Midfielders: Akram Tawfik, Ammar Hamdi, Imam Ashour, Nasser Maher, Ramadan Sobhi, Ibrahim Adel, Abdel Rahman Magdy, Taher Mohamed
Forwards: Ahmed Yasser Rayan, Salah Mohsen, Nasser Mansi
Featured photo: Twitter / African Cup of Nations