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These are the most popular sports in Egypt

If you are planning a visit to Egypt sometime soon, there is more to take in than just the pyramids! We are sure during your planning you have come up with all kinds of things to do and places to see that you don’t want to miss, but what about taking in a little sport? Here are some of the favorite sports of Egypt and a little language to help you when watching.


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Photo via Pixabay




Yes, you’ve guessed it. Like so many places in the world, football is Egypt’s favorite sport. The Egyptian Premier League is the professional level of Egyptian football, with eighteen teams competing for the title. The league operates on a home and away system meaning each team takes on their opponents at their home stadium and that of their opposing team. Teams to look out for are the current champions, Al Ahly, and the runners up of the last season, Al Zamalek.

The Egyptian Second Division is the next league down if you want some lower league football to watch. Teams are divided into three groups, with each group home to sixteen teams. And if you want even more grassroots football then there are third and fourth leagues for you to watch as well. Turning to the national team, the Egyptian team was the first African country to join Fifa, though has only made it to the World Cup three times. But the team is far more successful in the African Cup of Nations where they have won seven times. In short, whatever level of competition you prefer, there is plenty of Egyptian football for you to watch!


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Here is a little vocabulary to help you when on those football terraces.

Player — لاعب — laaib 

Attacker — هاجم — haajim 

Defender — مدافع — mudaafi 

Goalkeeper — حارس المرمى — haaris ul marmaa 

Referee — حَكِم — hakim

Ball — كرة — kura

Team — فريق كرة القدم — fareequ kurratil qadm 

Game — مباراة — mubaaraah 

Goal — هدف — hadaf 

Win — فوز — fawz

Lose — خسارة — khassarah

ُTie — تعادل — taaeadul

Offside — تسلل — tassallul 

ٌFree kick — ركلة حرة, ضربة حرة — raklatun hurrah / darabatun hurrah 

Penalty shot — ضربة الجزاء — darbat ul jazaa 

Corner kick — ركلة ركنية, ضربة ركنية — raklatun rukniyah / darbatun rukniyah 

Half time — شونصف الوقت — nsf alwaqt

ٌRed/Yellow card — بطاقة حمراء / بطاقة صفراء — bitaaqatun hamraa / bittaaqatun safraa


Photo via Flickr




Historically, the Egyptian national basketball team has had some notable achievements, both in the Basketball World Cup and the Summer Olympics. The team regularly competes in the FIBA Africa Championship, African Games, and Pan Arab Games. Though it is at the AfroBasket championship that the national team really shines. Since 1972 the team has one a total of 16 medals. But the team has some work to do! Currently the Egyptian national team rank 52nd in the FIBA world rankings.

If you prefer professional basketball, Egypt has that for you too! The Egyptian Basketball Super League is the top-tier basketball league in the country, with current champions Al Zamalek the team to watch. The league is split into four groups, each of which have four teams. Teams compete through a number of stages before hitting the quarterfinals, games taking place between October and December each year.

If you’re planning on heading to a court to watch some Egyptian basketball, here are some words to help you out.

Basketball — كرة السلة — kuraẗu al-sallah

Basketball player — لاعب كرة السلة — lāʿib kuret el-sallah

Team — فريق — farīq

Team effort — مجهود الفريق — maǧhūdu al-farīq

Tournament — بطولة — buṭūlah

Pass — تمريرة — tamrīrah

Championship — بطولة — buṭūlah

Shot — تسديدة — tasdīdah

Basket — سلة — sallah

Seed — متصدر المجموعة — mutaṣaddir al-maǧmūʿah

Upset — فوز مفاجئ للتوقعات — faūz mufāǧiʾ liltawaquʿāt

Dunk — دانك — daānk

Layup — رمية — ramyah

Dribble — دريبل — duriībl

Referee — حكم — hakam


Photo via Pixabay




We couldn’t talk about popular sports in Egypt without mentioning squash. Egypt can currently boast dominance of numerous world squash rankings, with seven of the top ten male players and four of the top ten women players in the world. The men’s and women’s national team holds four world titles apiece from the World Team Squash Championships. Look out for games with Amr Shabana and Karim Darwish playing for the men, and Raneem El Weleily and Nour El Sherbini for the women.

Here are a few words to help you if you are watching squash in Egypt:

Squash — الاسكواش — alaiskawash

Player — لاعب — laeib

Appeal — طعن قضائي — taen qadayiyin

Boast — مفخرة — mufakhara

Board — مجلس — majlis

Double hit — ضربة مزدوجة — darbat muzdawija

Drive — قيادة — qiada

Drop shot — تسقط النار — tasqut alnaar

Half court line — خط المحكمة نصف — khati almahkamat nsf

Handball — كرة يد — kurat yd

Interference — عائق — eayiq

Whatever sport you choose to watch in Egypt we are sure you will love it! And if you would like to practice a little Arabic before you go so you are better prepared both for your travels and any sports you watch, we are here to help. Our tailor-made courses can fit into any schedule. Why not check your current Arabic level with our free online Arabic test and then drop us a quick enquiry.