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Africa Cup of Nations

Afcon 2021: Egypt's El-Sayed pleads with Caf to change date with Senegal

22:02 GMT+3 04/02/2022
Egypt assistant coach Diaa El-Sayed.
The tactician wants the federation to follow the script that saw the third-place clash rescheduled

Egypt national team assistant coach Diaa El-Sayed has asked the Confederation of African Football (Caf) to change the final date of the Africa Cup of Nations.

The Pharaohs - after overcoming Cameroon in a penalty shootout on Thursday - are set to face Senegal on February 6, but the coach has explained why they would welcome a change of date. 

"I hope Caf would move the final from Sunday to Monday for the sake of fair play, they have done that with the third-place decider," El-Sayed is quoted by KingFut as saying.

"We are the only team that played 120 minutes in three consecutive games.

"The players are fully focused, they have a good base to build on, and we thank their clubs for that. [Mohamed] Salah being the group leader gives the players a lot of positive energy as well."

Meanwhile, El-Sayed did not want to comment on the red card given to Egypt's head coach, Carlos Queiroz, during the semi-final in Yaounde: "We also have a great head coach that has a lot of experience dealing with players," he added.

"I believe [Carlos] Queiroz’s send-off was undeserved, I’d like to dedicate the win to both him and his assistant Roger de Sa.

"I don’t want to discuss refereeing mistakes or the things we suffered throughout the tournament, players determination changes everything on the pitch.

"We appreciate our fans’ support and we’d like to thank them for being there for us."

Elsewhere, Mohamed Elneny has said they are focused on the final showdown against Sadio Mane's side despite the challenges he feels they underwent in Cameroon.

"We got the result we wanted and we are now heading to the final," the Arsenal star said.

"Throughout the tournament, we faced a lot of obstacles. A lot of players got injured, and our head coach was sent off, but we have the determination to finish our mission.

"Since we arrived in Cameroon, we had only one goal in mind which is winning the title and we’re doing everything to come out on top.

"Senegal game will be very difficult, they have a strong team. We will focus on recovering and preparing for the final.

"We want to bring the cup home, we believe we deserve it, especially after beating very strong teams in our journey. I can say that I believe we are on our way to winning the title."

The Pharaohs are in the hunt for their record eighth title while the Teranga Lions, the 2019 finalists, are yet to win the title.