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Football Reporting


El Badry praises Arsenal’s Elneny for gesture towards Liverpool’s Salah

Against Les Coelacantes, the Arsenal midfielder handed the captain’s armband to the two-time African Player of the Year

Egypt coach Hossam El Badry has showered encomium on Mohamed Elneny for his ‘great’ gesture in the Pharaohs’ 4-0 defeat of Comoros.

In the dead-rubber Africa Cup of Nations qualification encounter staged at the Cairo International Stadium on Monday, the Arsenal midfielder gave up the captain’s armband to the Liverpool star.

Interestingly, both teams were on target as the North Africans strolled past Amir Abdou’s men in their last Group G fixture.

Recalling the incident, the Egyptian handler, awestruck by the act, has expressed his appreciation to the former FC Basel man. He also showered encomium on his player for responding to the barrage of criticism that greeted their draw against Kenya.

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“We got used to responding [to criticism] on the pitch and this is what we did [against Comoros],” El Badry told the media as per

“Elneny wanted to speak to the public and clarify that there was no issue but I called him to remain focused.

“Elneny’s gesture to leave the captain’s armband to Salah was great and proves that this duo is of great value to the national team.”

Thanks to that result, Egypt finished as Group G winners having accrued 12 points from all six games played, with Comoros occupying the second spot with nine points. Kenya and Togo sit in third and fourth place after amassing seven and two points respectively.

The Pharaohs – who have ruled the continent on seven occasions – will be making their 25th appearance at the biennial African football showpiece in Cameroon.

Their last appearance at the final ended on a sour note after losing out in the Round of 16 to South Africa. The hosts were sent packing by Thembinkosi Lorch’s 85th-minute strike in the thrilling showdown.

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Salah and Elneny will lock horns against one another when Mikel Arteta’s Gunners welcome Jurgen Klopp’s Reds to the Emirates Stadium on Saturday, April 3.

The reigning English kings are seventh on the log after accruing 46 points from 29 matches in the 2020-21 campaign, while Arsenal sit in ninth place with 42 points from the same number of outings so far this season.

Three days after taking on the Gunners, Salah is expected to lead the Anfield side’s attack when his team travels to the Santiago Bernabeu for their Champions League quarter-final first leg against Real Madrid.

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