A last-gasp own goal from Amr El-Sulaya broke Egypt’s hearts as they fell 1-0 to Tunisia in the first semi-final of the FIFA Arab Cup on Wednesday.
The Ahly midfielder miscued an attempted clearance and powerfully headed the ball past his own goalkeeper following a corner deep in stoppage time.
It was hardly a fitting end to a drab affair in which both sides were overly-cautious, creating few openings at Qatar’s Stadium 974.
It took Egypt until the 75th minute to create their first goal-scoring chance, with substitute Mostafa Fathi blasting a volley high over with the goal at his mercy after a defensive mistake allowed Hamdi to play him in.
Egypt coach Carlos Queiroz once again experimented with his starting line-up, fielding several players in unfamiliar positions.
The Portuguese said more than once he was looking to try different strategies in the Arab Cup but his team selection will still draw criticism.
Egypt will meet the losers of Wednesday’s other semi-final clash between Algeria and hosts Qatar in the third-place playoff on Saturday.
The Pharoahs are using the Arab Cup as part of preparations ahead of the 2021 AFCON.
They are in Group D with Nigeria, Guinea-Bissau and Sudan.
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