AFCON 2017: Mali Out To Test Egypt’s Credentials

Egypt will rely on Mohamed Salah as they take on Mali

African Cup of Nations 2017 Group D Egypt vs Mali Stade de Port Gentil 10pm African cup of Nations record champions

Egypt return to the tournament after 7 years in the wilderness failing to qualify for the previous three editions.

The Pharaohs have won a record 7 titles including three consecutive triumphs in 2006, information pills 2008 and 2010.

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The breakout of a political turmoil that led to the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak eventually affected the performance of the national team.

The Egyptian national team hugely depended on locally based players from clubs like Zamalek and Al Ahly but the league crumbled due to political instability and thus the effect transformed to the national team.

However, after going back to the drawing board, Egypt return a composed side and looked at as one of the favorites to lift the title in Gabon.

The 7 time winners open their campaign against a tricky Mali side that has proved a great team in the previous editions including finishing third in 2012 and 2013.

Under Alain Grease, the Eagles of Mali will pose a great threat against Egypt as the two lock horns in group D on Tuesday at Stade de Port Gentil.

Mali have built a strong team with players like Sambou Yatabare,Bakary Sako,Yacouba Sylla among others.

Grease will have concerns about influential player Adama Traore who is a major doubt for the game against Egypt due to an injury.

Traore has not fully trained with the rest of the team but will be subjected to a late fitness test to confirm whether he will play.

On the other hand, Hector Cupper already set the championship as his target before the tournament and would want to get underway on a perfect note.

Mohammad Salah who plies his trade at AS Roma in Italy is looked at as the player that will shoulder the team’s burdens especially going forward.

Other notable stars on the team include Arsenal’s Mohammad Elneny, Omar Gabar,Ahmed Fathy and Ahmed Elmohamady among others.

The two sides have only met once at African cup of Nations and Mali won the game 1-0(quarterfinal) in 1994 courtesy of Soumaila Traore.


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