The Pharaohs' passage to Russia
By the Gazette Editorial Board
President Sisi's keenness on receiving all members of the Egyptian team and coaching staff that will compete in the 2018 Football World Cup which starts in Russia on Thursday is the latest and highest-level indication of the care given by the state to youth and sports activities. The timing of the President Sisi’s meeting with the team is quite significant as it took place with the 2018 World Cup only a few days away and the Pharaohs are readying to face Uruguay on Friday. Signaling to them the state’s profound support and estimation is indeed an important factor in encouraging the team to bolster their enthusiasm for producing such an honourable performance that would fulfill the hopes of their fans and re-asserts the competitiveness of Egyptian football players at all Arab, African, European and international levels.
While winning higher international recognition and medals is naturally a common objective of all nations that compete in world games, the range of state care and sponsorship points to the extent of interest in promoting sports activities as one of the areas for building a healthy society at both physical and moral levels. Needless to say, sporting and sports competitions constitute highly-influential areas where human societies can cultivate such desirable values as seriousness, fair play and dedication.
It was therefore a commendable move by some children magazines, especially including Al-Azhar’s Nour, and TV programmes to devote their cover stories and prime time content to the Pharaohs, especially including Mohamad Salah, bringing under focus his personality traits of seriousness in training and his firm resolve to keep advancing his professional performance. Nour’s editor has indicated in published statements that the magazine is keen on presenting Mo Salah as a model in motivating young people to achieve distinction.
Also reflecting the national attitude of lending all forms of support to the team representing Egypt in the world tournament is the decision by the national carrier EgyptAir to operate as many as 19 additional flights as of today and for four days to carry Egyptian fans to Russian cities. Preparations have also been actively under way to facilitate the travel arrangements and procedures for an estimated number of more than 3,500 Egyptian fans to Russian destinations where the national team will play matches with other Group 'A' contenders. There, the real fight will begin to bring joy and gratification to the millions of fans in Egypt and also to firmly establish the competitiveness and professional fineness of Egyptian football players.