Zaki set for showdown
© AFP

Egypt striker Amr Zaki is set for showdown talks with Wigan manager Steve Bruce after returning late from international duty for the fifth time this season.

Bruce is furious that Zaki, currently on loan at the Premier League club from Zamalek, once again opted not to fly back to England in time for training after playing for his country last week.

The Latics boss is set to meet the player and his advisors on Friday and is sure to pull no punches after accusing the forward of unprofessionalism and claiming his attitude showed disrespect towards the club who pay his wages and his team-mates.

Zaki, 26, insists he sustained a hamstring injury with Egypt but that is unlikely to cut much ice with Bruce, who could decide to call time on the loan deal before the end of the season.

To not show up and show a lack of respect is unacceptable and as I've said, it's not the first time. It has been a recurring thing.
Steve Bruce on Amr Zaki.

"I find it very difficult to contemplate where his future is at the moment, bearing in mind how I feel on the situation," said Bruce.

"This is not the first time, it's probably the fifth time and that cannot be the case. We will be speaking with him and his advisors in the next 24 hours to see exactly what the situation is, and I hope to resolve it as we do believe he has arrived back in the country.

"But my job is to manage the team, the club, and if everybody took his stance then we would be in a sorry mess. To not show up and show a lack of respect is unacceptable and as I've said, it's not the first time. It has been a recurring thing.

"In my opinion it's totally shocking. But if you have an employee who does what he wants to do, then of course you're going to be upset and disappointed. For me, it's been a ridiculous challenge, particularly when you consider it wasn't so long ago he was everybody's cup of tea and playing well."