AS Saint-Etienne : “If Romeyer had apologized, Mostafa Mohamed would have joined ASSE” | ASSE News

Zapping Goal! Football club ASSE: Laurent Hess’s edit on the nice shot Pape Cissé

Goal !: Hossam, how did you experience the soap opera Mostafa Mohamed?

Hossam MOSTAFA: It was an interesting story. She kept the Egyptians in suspense because Mostafa is an important player here, an international. I was at the heart of the discussions. It is my job. And the outcome was particular since in the end the player did not join the club which had made the best financial offer, which is quite rare in football today.

Mostafa Mohamed would have been a good reinforcement for ASSE according to you?

I think so. He is a good attacker, fast, skilful. He scores goals. In addition, he is young, he is only 23 years old. I think that at the price where it was, Saint-Etienne could have made a good deal, sportingly and financially. We saw what he did in Galatasaray, he has adapted well and he has scored 9 goals in 17 games since arriving in Turkey. He was much more effective than Anthony Modeste, whom ASSE went on loan to Cologne. I did not understand this choice very well. I think it would have been much more judicious for Saint-Etienne to invest in Mostafa Mohamed. It is even a certainty.

The first discussions were going in this direction …

Absolutely. And Saint-Etienne was very close to an agreement. The discussions were very advanced. But President Romeyer’s intervention on Egyptian television turned everything upside down.

“We wondered in Egypt if it was really the real Romeyer, the real president of AS Saint-Etienne. This intervention, it was so strange, so amazing ”

What did you think of this intervention?

She was not appropriate. Mostafa Mohamed wanted to come to Saint-Etienne. He preferred Ligue 1 to the Turkish league. But things displeased Romeyer in the negotiations and he decided to throw everything out in a TV interview. It was a big mistake. He said that people wanted to take advantage of the transfer to make money, to take commissions. And he hinted that it was about people on Zamalek’s board. The translation was questioned but Romeyer should have come back to explain his accusations. He should have apologized.

Zamalek’s board has been offended?

Of course. Romeyer had even threatened to name names if the transfer did not go through! Imagine for a moment that Saint-Etienne is in discussion with a foreign club for one of its players, and that the president of the club in question comes to make threats on French television. It’s unthinkable, isn’t it? I don’t remember ever having seen this. We even wondered in Egypt if it was really the real Romeyer, the real president of AS Saint-Etienne. This intervention, it was so strange, so amazing.

After this interview, it was excluded that Zamalek accepts the transfer of Mohamed to Saint-Etienne?

This would have only been possible if Romeyer had apologized. I think the negotiations could have resumed and succeeded. But the club’s only apologies came from Jean-Luc Buisine. It was not enough. Romeyer should have taken responsibility for his miscommunication himself.

What was the player’s position?

He has always favored Saint-Etienne. He really wanted to wear the green jersey. It was a good club for him, to discover Europe. After Romeyer’s intervention, he understood that he would not go there but he still wanted to join a European club. And there was no other offer other than Galatasaray. So Zamalek and Mostafa Mohamed accepted Galatasaray’s offer even though it was lower than Saint-Etienne’s. There have also been some criticisms of this. Saint-Etienne was ready to pay $ 5 million in cash. Galatasaray was a loan with an option to buy $ 4 million.

“Mostafa wanted to play in Ligue 1, one of the top five European leagues. He wanted to wear the green jersey ”

Do you think Zamalek agrees to discuss with ASSE if she is interested in another player?

I saw that Romeyer was no longer in charge, that it was Jean-François Soucasse now. So it should be possible yes, especially since Zamalek’s board has also changed.

Why did Mostafa Mohamed so want to come to Saint-Etienne?

Because it’s a big French club, with a big track record. Mostafa wanted to play in Ligue 1, one of the top five European leagues. He wanted to wear the green jersey, even though ASSE was not qualified for a European competition.

Is he happy in Galatasaray? Will he stay in Istanbul?

Yes, things are going well for him in Turkey. He is not going to compete in the Olympics with Egypt in order to help his club reach the group stage of the Champions League. He has already become an important player for Galatasaray. He’s in very good condition there. He can count on the support of the coach and that of his teammates since day one.

ASSE is still looking for a center-forward. In Egypt, who would you advise Claude Puel?

There are good scorers in Egypt. I am thinking of Mohamed Sherif, who scored 15 goals with Al Ahly, Acharaf Bencharki, the Moroccan from Zamalek, and two players on loan from Al Ahly: Ahmed Yasser Rayan, who scored 15 goals with Ceramica Cleopatra, and Ahmed Abdel Kader , which was loaned to Smouha.

Puel is also looking for a central defender …

So he could think of Yasser Ibrahim d’Al Ahly, reigning African champion, or Mahmoud Hamdi El Wensh, vice-champion of Africa with Zamalek. They are two very good defenders.

The secrets of an Egyptian journalist on the soap opera Mostafa Mohamed

According to Hossam Mostafa, journalist at Btolat, it would have been enough for Roland Romeyer to officially apologize to Zamalek’s board, after his controversial intervention on Egyptian TV, for ASSE to finalize the arrival of Mostafa Mohamed, this winter. .

Laurent HESS