The Africa Cup of Nations trophy has been stolen from the Egyptian Football Association headquarters in Cairo.
The Egyptian Football Federation confirmed to Goal that the trophy won by the Pharaohs three times in a row had been lost.
According to local reports, the former Egyptian Football Association, Vice President, who is also the current ONTime Sports broadcaster, Ahmed Shobir, the trophy was discovered missing during preparations to build a museum to house all the silverware won by the North African nation.
He said they were informed by an employee inside the association that it was last held by former Egypt captain, Ahmed Hassan, who refuted the claim.
“Officials of the committee which meets every five years and currently manages the Football Association were surprised that the trophy was not available, in light of their desire to create a museum at the federation headquarters, which would feature the trophy and the national team’s kits.
“However, (they) were surprised to find that the Afcon trophy was lost, and decided to open an investigation.
“The committee searched for the trophy, but then an employee told them that Ahmed Hassan, the former captain of the Egyptian national team, who won the cup three times in a row, has kept it,” Shobir said.
After learning of the trophy’s disappearance, Hassan took to social media to express his dismay at the loss.
“I wish I had kept the cup in my house instead of it being lost and I am surprised that I’m being questioned about the cup after nine years, despite the presence of two FA boards, and the five-year committee for a year and two months…but they’re only now looking for the cup,” he posted on his Twitter handle.
“The EFA started looking for some trophies with the aim of putting them in a notable museum inside the EFA.
“However, the EFA was surprised to find that the AFCON trophy was lost and decided to open an investigation.
“They were informed by an employee inside the association that it was last held by former Egypt captain Ahmed Hassan.
“Hassan however, denied the claims stating that he kept the trophy at home after winning the Africa Cup of Nations title in 2010 but returned it back to the Egyptian Football Association in 2011.
“As it stands nobody knows where the trophy is at the time being,” he said.