Egypt's Mexican coach Javie Aguirre was hard pressed to explain what may have gone wrong in their shock 1-0 loss to South African in their round of 16 match at Cairo International Stadium on Saturday night.
Angry Egyptian journalists repeatedly blamed him for his selection saying he had overlooked deserving players and that is why the hosts had failed to mount any meaningful challenge for the Africa title.
"I am proud of the team and my players. I am responsible for my choices. I will not discuss players not in my team but only those in the team," Aguirre calmly said after one journalists named several players he felt should have been part of Pharaohs 2019 Afcon team.
"Is it you or the players who have let the entire nations down, please tell us that," another Egyptian journalist asked.
"We are all feeling bad because of our exit and I am the one responsible for the loss. I am happy with the 23 players I had in my camp," the Mexican said, who was appointed coach of Egypt in 2018
With some journalists calling for his exit, Aguirre said he would be discussing his future with the Egyptian FA in the coming days.
The Caf media officer in charge of the press function had a hard time calming down the visibly agitated home scribes clearly looking to draw blood on this dark night - from the perspective of Egypt
Aguirre's selection tiff with the Egyptian media was reminiscent of that between French coach Sebastien Migne and a Kenyan press that has repeatedly questioned several of his inclusions and omissions.
Kenya were knocked out in the preliminary rounds.
Egypt breezed through the group phases with a 100 per cent record, scoring five goals while conceding none only to tumble out in the round of 16.
Egypt Football Association president Hany Abou-Rida later resigned from his post after announcing the sacking of Aguirre on the night according to local news outlets.
South Africa, who struggled through the qualifiers, only just secured a round of 16 berth as the last placed of four third placed teams. They will now meet Nigeria in the quarter-finals