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Nigeria’s 1st Afcon 2021 opponents, Egypt suffer injury woe

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Egypt’s midfielder, Amr El Suleya will miss the Afcon opener against Nigeria.

When Egypt line out against the Nigerian Super Eagles, one major absentee in the Pharoah side will be Ahly midfielder Amr El-Sulaya.

He is reported to have suffered a calf injury before the African Super Cup clash against Morocco’s Raja.

The Cairo giants said on Friday that El-Sulaya is facing at least three weeks on the sidelines after hurting his calf while warming up for the Raja clash, which Ahly had won on penalties following an exciting 1-1 draw in Qatar.

“El-Sulaya started today a rehabilitation program under the supervision of the medical team,” Ahly’s team doctor Ahmed Abou-Abla said.

The 32-year-old is likely to miss Egypt’s opening Nations Cup game against Nigeria on 11 January.

It’s now unclear if Egypt coach Carlos Queiroz will name El-Sulaya in his final squad for the biennial tournament

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The central midfielder is a key member of Egypt’s squad under the Portuguese boss, often playing on the left of a three-man midfield.

He took part in all of Egypt’s six games at the FIFA Arab Cup in Qatar, converting a penalty in a 1-1 group-stage draw with eventual champions Algeria.

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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