CAIRO:WadiDegla Football Club (WDFC) hassuspended one of its players to the end of the seasonafter he posted online commentsdeemed critical of President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, Youm7 reported Saturday.
“WadiDegla Club asserts its full respect to the freedom of expressingone’s opinion, guaranteed by the constitution, but at the same time the club emphasizes its rejectionof showing any political affiliation of its players,” according to a statement publishedon the WDFC webpage Saturday.
The decision comes in accordance with the club’s policy and principals that reject “mixing sport activities with political issues,” the statement said, citing a similar incident when a former coach of the football team was “rebuked due to comments critical of the Muslim Brotherhood group.”
On his facebook account, WDFC’s midfield player Ahmed ElMerganycriticized Thursday Sisi’s“failure” in handling of the recent militant attacks on military checkpoints in North Sinai that killed at least 17 security personnel.
Mergany held Sisi responsible for the death of the army personnel.
“Since you called on the people to take to the streets to give you a popular mandate to fightterrorism, everyone is dying; civilians, soldiers and policemen. Where are you amid all of this? All we ever get from you is talk with no actions,” Merghany wrote on his Facebook page.
It is not the first time an Egyptian footballer has been suspended over showing a political orientation to a specific group.
After scoring a goal in the African Champions League final match, striker of Al-Ahly Football Club Ahmed Abdel Zaher was suspended afterhe made a hand gesture of a pro-ousted President Mohamed Morsi sign.
On June 9, the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) announced on its official website thatthe 2014/2015 Premier League season will end Aug. 4 with four fixtures left for each one of the 20 football teams participating.