Egypt, Cúper near contract extension

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Manager Héctor Cúper is close to extending his stay at the helm of Egypt’s national team, according to the Egyptian Football Association (EFA).

“The entire board of directors has agreed to extend Cúper’s contract,” according to EFA Executive Director Tharwat Sweilam.

“We’ve given the go-ahead for [Hany] Abourida to negotiate with him,” he added.

EFA President Hany Abourida said in January that Cúper’s fate would be decided after the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals this summer.

The federation may have had a change of heart following reports of interest in Cúper from South America.

“Cúper is not greedy, and he is not taking advantage of the fact that we need him before the World Cup. He says he loves Egypt and that he wants to stay. He also said he would give Egypt the priority over any other offer if the financial gaps are not big,” according to Sweilam.

“Abourida will sit down with Cúper in the next few days. His contract will probably be extended before the national team’s next training camp in May.”

Cúper took charge of the Pharaohs in March of 2015, and has been credited with helping the team return to prominence after political instability and a changing-of-the-guard within the squad had rendered the team irrelevant internationally.

Under the 62-year-old Argentine’s tutelage, Egypt made it to the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations final and returned to the World Cup for the first time since 1990.

Still, many fans criticize Cúper for what they see as an overly conservative and unappealing approach, in which possession and scoring opportunities are few and far between.

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