Egypt coach ‘very optimistic’ Mohamed Salah will play World Cup opener

Craig Forrest and Brendan Dunlop take a look at the key storylines ahead of the 2018 World Cup.

Egypt coach Hector Cuper says he is "very optimistic" that Mohamed Salah will play in his team’s World Cup opener against Uruguay.

Cuper announced the development during a news conference in advance of Friday’s matchup.

Cuper said officials would continue to monitor Salah during their training session Thursday. But he said he was expecting his star striker to be on the field.

The FIFA World Cup in Russia runs from June 14 to July 15, and Sportsnet.ca will have in-depth daily coverage.

Salah had been questionable since suffering a left shoulder injury during a collision with Real Madrid’s Sergio Ramos during the Champions League final last month in Kyiv, Ukraine.

Salah almost single-handedly led Egypt to its spot in the 32-team World Cup field. He scored five goals in six games in the first round of the qualifiers, including a late penalty that earned the seven-time African champions their first World Cup berth since 1990.

Salah will celebrate his 26th birthday Friday.

When submitting content, please abide by our submission guidelines, and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account. Sportsnet reserves the right to close a story’s comment section at any time.