Egypt to hold World Cup playoff in Cairo

Published on NewsOK Modified: September 26, 2013 at 1:35 am •  Published: September 26, 2013

Egypt's national football team will play in Cairo for the first time in two years, and for a spot in the World Cup.

The Egyptian football association decided Wednesday to hold the second leg of the World Cup playoff against Ghana in November at a military stadium in the violence-hit capital.

The EFA also said that fans would be allowed in to watch the Nov. 15 game at the 30 June Stadium.

The decision to play in Cairo for the first time since late 2011 was taken after discussions between the national football body, sports minister Taher Abouzeid, a former Egyptian international player, and state authorities.

Egypt hasn't qualified for the World Cup since 1990, but under former United States coach Bob Bradley it progressed to the final two-leg playoffs for a place in Brazil next year with a perfect six wins in its group, the only team out of 40 to do that.

Bradley also had called for the playoff against 2010 World Cup quarterfinalist Ghana to be held in Cairo and in front of fans to boost the Egyptians' chances of making it to football's main event. The 30 June Stadium has a capacity of 30,000 and the EFA said it would be full for the Ghana game.

"We would love to play in Cairo," Bradley had said after the playoff draw last week in Cairo. "That is the dream of the team."