The Pharaohs of Egypt who are currently leading group G of the Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers will most likely be without the services of one of their key midfielders when they take on Nigeria in a double header in March.

Egypt are bidding to reach their first Nations cup since 2010 when they last won the last of their record seven titles and they currently lead their qualifiers group with maximum six points from wins over Tanzania and Chad but will most likely be without the services of Mohammed Abdel Shafi when they take on Nigeria who are second on four points in two consecutive games one at home and away from home.

Former Zamalek star Mohammed Abdel Shafi who currently plays for Saudi heavyweights Ahli Jeddah, was substituted in the match against Al-Khalee over the weekend due to pains in his right knee and the club released a statement on Tuesday about his condition.

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“Abdel-Shafi needs a surgery in his knee as the medical staff’s trials to cure his pains have failed, doctors have yet to determine the rehabilitation period” They said in a release on their official website.

30 year old, Abdel-Shafi joined second place Ahli Jeddah last year on a three year deal from Zamalek in a deal reportedly worth $2.8million and has impose himself as one of the team’s key players.

In July 2015, the Saudi club announced the signing of Abdel-Shafi from Cairo giants Zamalek on a three-year deal for $2.8 million.