Amr Warda was kicked out of the Egypt squad on Wednesday after allegations of sexual harassment were made against him.
“The head of the Egyptian Football Federation, Hani Abu Reda, has decided to dismiss Amr Warda from the team’s camp after consulting with the team’s technical and administrative staff, in order to maintain the state of discipline, commitment and concentration,” the nation’s statement read.
It’s alleged in the Daily Mail that the PAOK winger sent ‘aggressive and inappropriate sexual messages’ to model Merhan Keller and a number of other women.
The Egyptian-British model went public after receiving messages via two social media sites, Instagram and WhatsApp.
Keller also shared messages from other women who had been harassed in a similar way, per the Guardian‘s report.
With Egypt chasing glory at the Africa Cup of Nations, this kind of behaviour from Warda not only reflects badly on the team but also serves as a potential distraction to those still in the camp.
There were no signs of the latter on Wednesday night though, as The Pharaohs beat DR Congo 2-0 in their second group game.
Mohamed Salah scored the second goal and following the match, he took to social media to respond to the sexual harassment claims against Warda.
“Women must be treated with the utmost respect. ‘No’ means ‘no’. Those things are and must remain sacred,” Salah wrote on Twitter.
“I also believe that many who make mistakes can change for the better and shouldn’t be sent straight to the guillotine, which is the easiest way out.
“We need to believe in second chances… we need to guide and educate. Shunning is not the answer.”
After being kicked out of the Egypt squad, Warda also took to social media to apologise for his actions, saying in a video: “Sorry to anyone who is upset at me or anyone I have upset.”