Chechen fans bring smile to Salah's face with 100kg cake

Mohamed Salah Egypt

Chechen fans bring smile to Salah's face with 100kg cake

However, Salah looks set to return to action for Egypt's vital second group game, against the host nation, although previous insistence that he would play against Uruguay will plant seeds of doubt in many minds.

Egypt's talisman was presented with the two-tier cake in the colours of the national flag on the team's arrival at their training base of Grozny early on Saturday.

Egypt, competing in a first World Cup since 1990, also expected to have midfielder Tarek Hamed available following a back problem.

The 26-year-old missed his country's loss to Uruguay on Friday because of the shoulder injury he sustained in the Champions League final against Real Madrid.

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"(His) condition is so much better", Egypt executive director Ihab Leheta said Saturday.

"The Russia game will be hard because of our defeat against Uruguay. He thought he could have played and made a contribution".

But Salah at least he can take comfort in a 100-kilogramme (60 pound) birthday cake he was confronted with on his 26th birthday on Friday.

A video clip showed a cake coated in the colors of the Egyptian and Chechnya flags sitting on a table in the team's hotel lobby.

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He passed to Roman Zobnin , who swung in a decent cross from the left only for the Saudis to make it look like a precision dart. He'll struggle to replicate that with a Saudi team he took over after it had qualified for the World Cup .

He began smiling meekly and suspecting something was not right when a hotel employee shot confetti in his face.

Salah did not oblige while smiling shyly and profusely.

Egypt will train at Krestovsky Stadium on Monday evening ahead of Tuesday's match against Russian Federation, who opened the tournament with a 5-0 trashing of Saudi Arabia in Moscow.

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