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Poyet happy for El-Abd
El-Abd has been recalled to the Pharaohs’ squad for friendlies against Benin and Nigeria next month after his first call-up earlier in the summer was hampered by passport delays.
Team-mates Andrew Crofts and Craig Mackail-Smith are also expected to feature in the Wales and Scotland squads respectively for their opening World Cup qualifiers during the same period.
They will all leave after Saturday’s trip to Burnley and be back in time for Albion’s next home game against Sheffield Wednesday on Friday September 14 (7.45pm).
Poyet said: “I’ve got no problems with that. I always respect the players to be able to play for their national teams.
“It’s something we need to cope with. The bigger the club becomes the more internationals we will have. The biggest clubs when it is an international week only have four or five players training.
“It’s not an issue for me at all. If he is happy I am pleased for the player as well.”
Seven-time champions Egypt were surprisingly knocked out in qualifying for the January 2013 African Nations Cup, losing 4-3 on aggregate to Central African Republic. Poyet said: “The only issue would have been the African Nations Cup, because if he (El-Abd) had been missing five games then it would be a problem.”
El-Abd, whose father is Egyptian, is having Arabic lessons. He said: “The coach Bob Bradley does his team talks in English as he is American and a lot of the boys speak English too.
“I know it is a bit of a cliche but, when you are on the pitch, football is a universal language, but the lessons will always help.
“Hopefully I can get some game time in the next two matches because I want to be involved, not just be there to make up the numbers.”
Albion are no closer to signing a striker before the transfer window closes on Friday night and Poyet has no plans to loan out one of his three senior keepers now that Casper Ankergren and Peter Brezovan are backing up new No. 1 Tomasz Kuszczak. The Uruguayan said: “I am really comfortable with the situation. I am not looking for them to go anywhere.”
Will Buckley (hamstring) returned to training yesterday and Vicente (thigh) is now scheduled to resume training today.