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Page last updated at 16:01 GMT, Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Egypt, Algeria appeal for calm

The 2010 World Cup logo
Egypt and Algeria are chasing a place at the 2010 World Cup

Egypt and Algeria have called for calm ahead of Saturday's crucial 2010 World Cup football qualifier in Cairo.

The Egyptian foreign ministry added that sport should not affect relations.

"There is a joint Egyptian and Algerian desire for calm ahead of the crucial match," spokesman Hossam Zaki said.

He said there was "official cooperation between both sides to ensure that the competitiveness, no matter how intense, does not affect the relationhip which links both people and countries."

Egyptian and Algerian media "hold a responsibility in this regard... and must work to maintain the strong ties between both countries and should not fuel disagreements that are unrelated to sports and sportsmanship," Zaki said.

Last week, Algerian Foreign Minister Mourad Medelci and his Egyptian counterpart Ahmed Abul Gheit called on media outlets in both countries to maintain "sportsmanship and a brotherly spirit" ahead of the game.

If Algeria win, draw or even lose by a single goal they will qualify for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

African champions Egypt need to win by at least three goals in order to reach the World Cup if the Pharaoh's win by two goals there will be a play-off on 18 November in Sudan.

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