Egyptian Goalkeeper, Essam El-Hadary Quits International Football

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Legendary Egyptian goalkeeper, Essam El-Hadary, has retired from international football.
He was the oldest player to appear in a World Cup match during the 2018 tournament in Russia.

The 45-year-old made the announcement on Facebook late Monday: “After 22 years, four months and 12 days, I saw it as the best moment to hang up my gloves”.

El-Hadary debuted for the Pharaohs during the 1996 World Cup against South Korea, according to him, he’s “very proud” after playing in 159 international matches.

He played in Egypt’s final group game in Russia, saving a penalty in the Pharaohs’ 2-1 defeat by Saudi Arabia.

The previous record for oldest World Cup player was also a goalkeeper, the Colombian Faryd Mondragón, who retired after the 2014 tournament aged 43.

El-Hadary will still be the goalkeeper for Egypt’s Ismaili team. He’s a celebrity at home since Egypt won three straight African Cup titles with him as goalie between 2006 and 2010. He was also named the tournament’s best goalkeeper three times. 

He took up football as a youth without his parents’ knowledge, reportedly washing his clothes in the Nile after matches to avoid them finding out.

El-Hadary began his goalkeeping journey with Egypt’s local Damietta team. 

Kofi Oppong Kyekyeku

I am a Ghanaian Broadcast Journalist/Writer who has an interest in General News, Sports, Entertainment, Health, Lifestyle and many more.

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