Road to Colombia
Egypt went into the CAF Africa Futsal Cup of Nations as defending champions and were favourites to book one of the three tickets on offer to the World Cup finals. The Pharaohs managed to get through the group stage without too much trouble, beating Morocco and Angola and being held to a historic goalless draw by Libya. In the semi-finals, they struggled against Zambia, but prevailed in the end 5-4. The victory saw them qualify for Colombia and although Morocco denied them a fourth title with a 3-2 win in the final, the Egyptians managed to achieve their main goal.
Strengths and styles
Having participated at the last World Cup finals, Egyptian coach Hesham Saleh can count on several experienced players in Colombia. He has managed to blend veterans like Mostafa Nader and forward Mizo, with youngsters such as Abdelrahman Eid Moawad, Khaled Abdalla Mohamed and Mostafa Eid Mohamed, who scored nine goals in the competition.
FIFA Futsal World Cup record
Egypt have an unblemished record of appearances at the Futsal World Cup, having first taken part in 1996. Although Zimbabwe and Nigeria were Africa's first two participants (in 1988 and 1992 respectively), they were invited to play and did not have to qualify. Despite their consistent presence, Egypt have yet to advance to the quarter-finals. They managed to escape the group phase in 2000, when they were second behind Netherlands in the first round and then finished third in their group in the second round. In 2012, they advanced as one of the best third-placed teams from the first round, but then lost to Italy in the round of 16.