After a career culminated in “on loan” transfers, young defender Mohamed Abdel Moneim proved himself as a first-class defender, thanks to the confidence of Portuguese coach Carlos Queiroz.
Queiroz surprised the Egyptian fans with unexpected choices in the Egyptian team’s squad, during the Arab Cup and then the African Nations Cup, but he silenced everyone by choosing the heart of the young defense, Mohamed Abdel Moneim.
Abdel Moneim spent the past two seasons with the Smouha club, where he participated in 33 matches and presented good levels with the Alexandrian club.
With his return to Al-Ahly at the beginning of this season, he was loaned again, this time to the Future Club, and it seemed as if Abdel Moneim did not have the confidence of Al-Ahly much, and that his career would be similar to many who left Al-Ahly and then moved to the mid-ranking clubs.
But coach Queiroz gave him the “kiss of life”, when he decided to choose him to represent the Egyptian national team, an opportunity that the 22-year-old defender seized best.
With the injury of the main defense center in the Egyptian team, Mahmoud Hamdi Al-Wansh, at the beginning of the tournament, Abdel Moneim’s moment came to play a key role in the largest African forum.
From the first round, Abdel Moneim seemed steady, few errors, difficult to cross for opponents, and his level gradually developed until we reached the stage of the playoffs.
After that, Abdel Moneim emerged a lot and became the spotless jewel in the Egyptian defense line, and he did not hesitate to take penalty kicks when needed, and climb with the attackers in the corners.
After his superb performance in the final against Senegal, he was considered by many experts as the “best defender of the tournament”, and many sports websites put him in their list of the “perfect lineup for the tournament”.
Perhaps the shot of veteran defender Kalidou Coulibaly, captain of Senegal, directed to Abdel Moneim, after the final, and to talk to him at length and motivational, was the best evidence of the strength of the Egyptian star’s performance.
Coulibaly and Abdel Moneim’s shot spread on social media, and many considered it an invaluable “testimony” from the veteran defender Coulibaly, who is among the best in the world, for the young defender.
As for the Al-Ahly club, it decided to immediately end the loan of Abdel Moneim, and return him to the “red genie”, realizing the extent of the talent that the club almost gave up.
Queiroz’s bet on the young defender paid off, and Abdel Moneim became one of the best decisions taken by the Portuguese coach since his appointment to coach the “Pharaohs”.