An ongoing dispute between the football star Mohamed Salah and the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) was a subject tackled by writers in Wednesday’s newspapers.
Editor-in-chief of the privately-owned Al-Shorouk newspaper Emad El-Din Hussein presented the problem as a result of persistent conflicting ways of thinking between discipline and organisation surrounding professional players around the world and the chaotic and random handling of those players by the EFA. According to Hussein, Salah asked for basic and obvious rights, while those who refuse his fair demands are trying to demonise him and portray him as arrogant.
“Arrogant” was indeed the word used by Khaled Ezzedine in state-owned Al-Ahram who asked if this was the reason Salah decided to speak up now about problems that have existed for years. The writer also blamed Salah for publicly accusing the EFA of lying and raised suspicions about the timing of his escalation, nearly a month before a game between Egypt and Niger.
In state-owned Al-Akhbar, Karam Gabr put the blame on Salah’s agent who according to him should not be allowed to “ruin relations between the star and his fans.” Gabr wrote that Ramy Abbas, Salah’s lawyer and agent is trying to politicise the crisis, something he compared to what he described as the Muslim Brotherhood’s manipulative approaches.
As for the private Al-Youm Al-Sabea newspaper’s Hazem Salah El-Din, both sides have to reconsider themselves. While he called on the EFA to resolve the dispute and blamed it for not dealing with Salah professionally. However, he criticised Salah’s lawyer for the threatening tone he used in regards to Salah’s not joining the national team for the game with Niger. The writer also mentioned that the Muslim Brotherhood supporters played a role in spreading rumours on social media.
Al-Akhbar’s Mohamed Barakat argued that the EFA should have acted as soon as the team returned from the World Cup, investigated and evaluated the entire proves and took note of the mistakes which surrounded Egypt’s participation in the global competition. Maybe then, according to Barakat, the EFA would have noted how much Salah was frustrated and disappointed.