Salah's dispute with EFA escalated



Tue, 28 Aug 2018 - 01:56 GMT


Tue, 28 Aug 2018 - 01:56 GMT

Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates after the match - REUTERS/Phil Noble

Liverpool's Mohamed Salah celebrates after the match - REUTERS/Phil Noble

CAIRO – 28 August 2018: Egypt Today engaged in the detailed correspondences between Egyptian footballer Mohamed Salah’s lawyer, Ramy Abbas, and the Egyptian Federation Association EFA in the light of the current dispute over the player’s image rights.

Salah took to twitter to voice discontent with what he called negligence of the EFA in dealing with his demand, before the letters between his lawyer and the EFA were released on Monday.

Abbas has also hinted at a possible list of demands for the EFA on Sunday through twitter, the lawyer accused the EFA of showing no response to his requests.

However, the emails sent by Abbas were released on Monday to shed light on the lingering dispute between the lawyer and the EFA members.

Salah’s lawyer used strong language to put the demands he said were discussed with Salah before being sent. On August 23 Abbas sent an email to the President of the EFA, Hany Abo Rida, asking him to meet seven demands or Abbas- as Salah’s lawyer- will call for the immediate resignation of the EFA board.

Here is the full content of the correspondence:

“23 August 2018


President Egyptian Football Association

Via email to

Subject: Mohamed Salah Ghaly

Dear Sirs,

I am writing on behalf of Mohamed Salah (“Mohamed”). As you know, the Egyptian Football Association (“EFA”) has caused great harm to Mohamed in the recent months, and this is something we have not forgotten about, and nor should you.

You have not made Mohamed comfortable whilst he is on International Duty and I cannot think of any other National Association which would treat any player in the disgraceful and abhorrent manner as you have treated Mohamed. Your World Cup failure is the direct result of the incompetent management which you have displayed ever since Mohamed scored that stoppage time penalty against Congo.

Success on the field took a back seat ever since. We are currently assessing Mohamed’s situation with the Egyptian Football Association. Mohamed holds Egypt in the highest regard and he is lost for words when it comes to describing what it feels like to play for his country. Mohamed would like to continue representing his country for many years to come. Mohamed is a true patriot, and as Thomas Jefferson once said, “dissent is the highest form of patriotism”.

We may call for the President, and for the entire board, and management, of the EFA to resign with immediate effect. Whether or not we do this depends on your response to this letter, and on how the EFA conducts itself moving forward.

This is explained further below. Despite the public declarations of love by the EFA towards Mohamed in the various media channels, the EFA has time and time again disrespected Mohamed and has never made any efforts to ensure that he is comfortable whilst on International Duty. Actions speak volumes, and so far, your silence is deafening. Simply put, moving forward, the only extent to which the EFA is to benefit from Mohamed is by him playing football in official matches for the Egyptian National Team, nothing else.

It is vital that you understand and accept this. Aside from training sessions and technical meetings, you would have to consider that Mohamed only comes to life at kick off, and until the final whistle is blown. At all other times, Mohamed does not exist for the purposes of the EFA.

It may be easier for you to pretend that outside those times, Mohamed vanishes into thin air. Moreover, no one from the EFA is permitted to even discuss with Mohamed the possibility of a celebrity meeting him whilst he is made available for International Duty.

We will not tolerate the EFA allowing people to camp outside Mohamed’s hotel room during the early hours of the morning and knock on his door at 3am or 4am to ask for autographs and pictures, or for him to be mobbed whilst being taken to or from the training ground. The EFA’s Obligations: The EFA must confirm that it shall ensure that:

1) Two security guards are present outside Mohamed’s hotel room at all times, and another security guard is placed at the lifts of the floor in which Mohamed’s room is located.

2) All phone calls to Mohamed’s hotel room are blocked.

3) Mohamed will not be expected to be made available for any promotional appearances, interviews, meets and greets, sponsor events, official visits, “VIP” visits, picture sessions, or anything, by anyone on behalf of the EFA. All such appearances must be discussed with me well in advance in my capacity as sole director of MS Commercial (Cayman) LTD. Please expect all such requests to be refused.

4) Whenever Mohamed travels for International Duty, the EFA must ensure that he is picked up from the airplane and taken directly to his hotel room in the most discrete manner possible. All the staff involved in this must be made acutely aware that they are not to ask for pictures or autographs, or delay him in any way.

5) Mohamed must always be accompanied by two security guards at least and must be safely and comfortably transported to and from the training ground.

6) No one working for the EFA, or connected to the EFA (including, without limitation, guests of the EFA) may ask Mohamed for autographs or pictures. There will be a time and place for everything and this will be decided by MS Commercial (Cayman) LTD, and never by the EFA.

7) The image of Mohamed is never used by the EFA or by any sponsor of the EFA, without the written consent of MS Commercial, regardless of whether the image of Mohamed is used alone, or alongside other players of the Egyptian National Team (this request is made by me on behalf of MS Commercial (Cayman) LTD in my capacity as Director).

Having miserably failed in all your attempts to drive a wedge between Mohamed and I, your efforts should instead be focused on making sure that Mohamed is comfortable and not damaged when he makes himself available for international duty.

In the short term, it is your response to us which shall determine whether or not we believe that you, and the entire board of the EFA should resign, and on whether or not we would have a duty to the Egyptian people to voice our opinion in this regard.

These conditions are non-negotiable. The Media: Pending your response, which we must receive by Monday, 27 August 2018, signed by the President of the EFA, we shall not be making any statements to the media or on social media.

We may, however, revisit this decision at any time. With respect to the statements made in the past about me by the EFA and those speaking on its behalf, may I suggest that for practical purposes, you take a look at the relatively short history between us and see whether you stand a chance against me, whether we battle this out in the media, away from the media, in court, or wherever. Your next steps: You must respond to this letter by Monday, 27 August 2018.

Your response should unequivocally confirm your acceptance to all the above. Should you not respond within the aforementioned timeframe or should your response in any manner fall short of our expectations, we would consider that you are not willing to accommodate the demands we have set out above and both Mohamed and I would, call for the resignation of the President of the EFA and of the entire board of the EFA. We will now outline how we would do this.

We would, on 2 September 2018, write to you again and ask that you and the entire board of the EFA resign, within 5 days of such letter. If you do not resign, we would on 7 September 2018, at 12 noon Egyptian time, publicly call for your resignation and that of the entire board of the EFA.

All rights reserved,


Ramy Abbas Issa”

Abbas sent another letter to the EFA where he accused the latter of missing the deadline of calling up Salah for 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Niger by four days. Some doubt has been cast upon Salah’s participation in the aforementioned game due to the letter’s language.

Here is the full content of the letter:

“26 August 2018


President Egyptian Football Association
Via email to

Subject: National Team Call-up for Mohamed Salah Ghaly.
Dear Sirs,

I am writing on behalf of Mohamed Salah (“Mohamed”). By way of a letter 23 August 2018, sent to Liverpool FC (“LFC”), the Egyptian Football Association (“EFA”) asked LFC to release Mohamed for the upcoming FIFA release period commencing on on 3 September 2018, and ending on 9 September 2018.

In this respect, please note that pursuant to Annexe 1 (Release of players to association teams) Art. 3 par. 2 of the current version of the FIFA Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players, which came into force on 1 January 2018, and which reads: “Associations wishing to call up a player must notify the player in writing at least 15 days before the first day of the international window (cf. Annexe 1, article 1 paragraph 4) in which the representative teams’ activities for which he is required will take place.

Associations wishing to call up a player for the final competition of an international tournament must notify the player in writing at least 15 days before the beginning of the relevant release period. The player’s club shall also be informed in writing at the same time. Equally, associations are advised to copy the association of the clubs concerned into the summons.

The club must confirm the release of the player within the following six days.” [emphasis added] Given that the upcoming release period commences on 3 September 2018, the deadline to notify of Mohamed’s call-up would have been on 19 August 2018.

The EFA only wrote to LFC on 23 August 2018, and therefore missed the deadline by 4 days. As consequence, Mohamed is not, pursuant to the FIFA Regulations, obliged to respond affirmatively to your call up, or to travel to join the Egyptian National Team, for the upcoming FIFA release period commencing on 3 September 2018. For the sake of making LFC aware of our position on this matter, they are copied in this communication. We thank you for your understanding.

All rights reserved,


Ramy Abbas Issa”

The EFA addressed on Monday Abbas’s letters calling his warnings threats against the board members. The EFA’s response expressed its total “dismay” and “disgust” at the contents of Abbas’s letters.

The response disagreed to meet the demands placed by Salah’s lawyer. “Whilst we appreciate the effort and commitment at all times shown by Mr Mohamed Salah Ghaly whilst on international duty, same should not be construed in any way whatsoever as being a reason for him to be singled-out for special and preferential treatment, as requested by you in your letter under reply,” said EFA’s reply to Abbas’s correspondence.

Salah published a video earlier on Monday to clarify the main points of the current dispute with the EFA, refuting all allegations of him seeking after a special treatment.



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