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African Football

Egypt's Foreign Goalkeepers Ban & Why It Was Imposed

In 2009, the Egyptian Football Association banned teams from signing foreign goalkeepers. With the ruling recently being upheld, here is why it was imposed in the first place!

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This week, the Egyptian FA reportedly extended the ban on the signing of foreign shot-stoppers across all domestic leagues in the country.

The ban was put in place 12 years ago due to an apparent goalkeeper crisis in the country, after then-Egypt coach Hassan Shehata bemoaned a lack of quality shot-stoppers coming through the ranks to replace the legendary Essam El Hadary.

The ruling saw that existing foreign goalkeepers across Egypt's domestic leagues would be allowed to see out their contracts but not extend their stay with the clubs they represented.

In a recently released statement, the federation announced its decision to uphold the ban.

Click through the gallery below to see where El Hadary ranks among the oldest footballers of all time!

"The Federation decided to continue not to allow foreign goalkeepers in any club in any of the different departments," the statement read, according to Goal

"As for the registration procedures and instructions for the new season, the Egyptian Football Association decided that each team will be able to register 30 players in all divisions.

"In the Premier League – the first division league – every club will be allowed to register up to five foreign players, while Palestinian players would be treated as Egyptians with a maximum of only one Palestinian player for every club."

El Hadary represented the Pharaohs until the age of 45, retiring after the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, during which he became the oldest player in history to play at the tournament.

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Egypt's current first-choice goalkeeper is Al Ahly's Mohamed El Shenawy, who has been capped 20 times since his debut in 2018.

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