Mahmoud El-Gohary

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Mahmoud El-Gohary
Personal information
Date of birth (1938-02-20)February 20, 1938
Place of birth Cairo, Egypt
Date of death August 31, 2012(2012-08-31) (aged 74)
Place of death Amman, Jordan
Playing position Striker
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1955–1961 Al Ahly
National team
1958–1961 Egypt 5 (3)
Teams managed
1965–1977 Al Ahly (assistant)
1977–1981 Al-Ittihad (assistant)
1981–1982 Al-Ittihad
1982–1984 Al Ahly
1984–1985 Al-Sharjah
1985–1986 Al Ahly
1986–1988 Al-Ahli Jeddah
1988–1990 Egypt
1991–1993 Al Ahly
1993–1994 Zamalek SC
1995–1996 Al-Wahda
1996–1997 Oman
1997–2001 Egypt
2001–2007 Jordan
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Mahmoud-el-Gohary (Arabic: محمود الجوهري‎) (February 20, 1938 – August 31, 2012)[1] was an Egyptian international football player who played as a striker for Al-Ahly from 1955 to 1961. He was forced into early retirement in 1961 due to a persistent knee injury and moved into coaching, and eventually management. As a manager, he is best known for leading the Egyptian national team to the 1990 World Cup and for being the only person to have managed both Al-Ahly and Zamalek SC, Egyptian teams with a fierce rivalry. Mahmoud El-Gohary is considered to be one of Egypt and Africa's greatest football icons.


As a player, El-Gohary had a short-lived career. A persistent knee injury forced him into early retirement in 1961 cut short a career full of promise. In the 1959 African Cup of Nations, which Egypt won, he ended as the top scorer in the competition. After his retirement from the game, El-Gohary became a coach with Al-Ahly, eventually becoming an assistant manager from 1965 to 1977.

In 1977, he became assistant manager to Dettmar Cramer at Al-Ittihad in Saudi Arabia. Cramer left Al-Ittihad at the end of the 1981 season and El-Gohary was promoted to manager. Al-Ittihad won their first ever Saudi Premier League and El-Gohary won the first of many trophies as a manager. At Al-Ahly, he won the first African League Titles - African League Winners & African League Cup winners. With Zamalek, he won the first African Super Cup against Al-Ahli.

Under his leadership, Egypt’s National Team qualified for the World Cup in 1990, after the country's 56-year absence from the tournament. Under El-Gohary's management, the Jordanian national team reached the highest FIFA World Rankings in history when they reached 37th rank in August 2004.[2] Under the leadership of El-Gohary, the Jordanian national team qualified for their first AFC Asian Football Confederation in China 2004. Jordan reached the quarterfinals of the tournament but failed to qualify for the semifinals after losing to Japan in a penalty shoot-out, resulting in a score of 1-1. In the West Asian Football Federation Championship Tournaments of 2004 and 2007, El-Gohary helped Jordan win third place.

After he retired as a football coach, he became the technical adviser for the Jordan Football Association. He transformed the Jordanian Football League to a professional body, and he has various Football Academies for youth placed under Prince Ali's name. He died on 31 August 2012, in Amman, Jordan.[3]

El-Gohary is often praised among Egyptians due to his motivation into having a good team for the World Cup. When Egypt qualified, he ordered the Egyptian football association to cancel the Egyptian League so he can focus on the players.(Back then, all Egyptians played domestically.) They played around fifteen friendlies(some of them were played before the draw.) These preparations helped Egypt greatly. They tied 1-1 with Netherlands(a team that had recently won the Euro Cup at the time), 0-0 with Ireland(a team that would go to the Quarterfinals) and 1-0 to England(they later went to the semi-final, England's best achievement since winning the cup in 1966.)


As a player[edit]

National team

  • 1959 African Cup of Nations winner
  • Top scorer of 2nd African Cup Of Nations (Egypt 1959)
  • He is the first one of two people who has won the African Cup of Nations both as a player and as a coach, the second being Stephen Keshi

For Ahly

  • 6 Egyptian leagues: 1955–1956–1957–1958–1960–1961
  • 2 Egyptian cups: 1955/56–1960/61

As a coach[edit]

Egypt national team

Qualified for the FIFA World Cup in Italy in 1990, for the first time since 1934. With an opening 1-1 draw against the Netherlands (the European Cup Winner in 1988), and a later 0-0 draw against Ireland, and a close loss 0-1 against England, the performance of the Egyptian team was beyond expectations. The opening match in particular earned El-Gohary a reputation in Egypt and internationally as a coach capable of elevating the class of the team he is coaching using modern strategy and tactics. As a partial result of the good performance of Egypt, and the exceptional performance of Cameroon in 1990, FIFA decided to increase the number of African teams qualifying to the World Cup to three teams instead of two (one more than Asia). With the increase of the number of teams participating in the World Cup from 24 to 32, the actual number of African teams increased to 5 teams per tournament.

For Ahly (Egypt)

For Zamalek (Egypt)

For Al-Wehda (UAE):

  • 1 United Arab Emirates Cup, 1996

Jordan national team


  • Three times Best Arab Coach Winner 1989–93–98
  • Chosen by FIFA among the best 20 coaches of the year 1998
  • Best African coach 1998 Winner by Football Afrique


  1. ^ Mahmoud El-Gohary's obituary (in Arabic)
  2. ^ "FIFA Ranking (Dec, 2004) - Rank:1 to Rank:49".
  3. ^ "Legendary Egyptian coach Mahmoud el Gohary dies ages 74". BBC Sport. 3 September 2012.

External links[edit]