Enough water has gone under the bridge to say that during his tenure as United States National Team coach from 2006-2011 Bob Bradley was under appreciated. A lot of U.S. fans (myself included at times) wanted him to be something he wasn’t, namely Jurgen Klinsmann whom was rumored to be the top candidate to replace Bruce Arena. Bradley did guide the U.S. to the final of the 2009 Confederations Cup and the Round of 16 at the World Cup the following year, but it wasn’t enough.
A loss to Mexico in the 2011 Gold Cup final sealed the Princeton man’s fate.
As the door closed on the U.S. job, a window opened up for Bradley in, of all places, Egypt which was still dealing with the aftermath of its revolution to oust president Hosni Mubarak in early 2011. Less than six months into taking the Egypt job the Port Said Stadium riot occurred, resulting in 79 deaths. the Egyptian Premier League season was suspended and the country missed out on both the 2012 Olympics and the 2013 African Cup of Nations.
Through all the turmoil, Bradley has Egypt positioned to move on to the final round of African World Cup qualifying. The Pharoahs need only two points from their final two games to move into the final round, which consists of a two-leg playoff to book a place in Brazil. It would be the country’s first World Cup since 1990 in Italy. (Bradley has also unearthed a budding star in Mohamed Salah, who already has 17 goals in 22 international matches.)
Bradley’s time in Egypt has led to multiple documentaries being filmed, including the one posted above, “American Pharaoh: Bob Bradley & the Egyptian Soccer Team.” It looks like a worthwhile watch, even if you’re not a soccer fan. The ground-level access in a country dealing with the aftermath of seismic cultural change is something worth carving out some time to view. There’s also another film, “We Must Go” about Bradley in Egypt.
With a topic this rich, the more, the better.
It’s good to see Bradley land on his feet and thrive in one of the toughest environments imaginable.