Egypt and Ghana are set for a showdown in a crucial Africa Cup of Nations clash as both teams aim to bounce back from disappointing starts.
The Pharaohs salvaged a 2-2 draw against Mozambique with a late Mohamed Salah penalty, while the Black Stars suffered a shock 2-1 defeat to Cape Verde.
It means that the Pharaohs must beat Ghana to stay in contention for the next round of the competition, while Ghana must also beat Egypt to avoid early exit from the group stage, setting the stage for fierce encounter.
Of the two sides, Ghana are in a worse predicament having suffered a shock defeat to Cape Verde on Sunday night. Since then, coach Chris Hughton has been subjected to a backlash from certain quarters of the Ghana supporters.
Preview: Ghana vs Egypt
Abidjan’s Félix Houphouët Boigny stadium will be the centre attention once again as TotalEnergies CAF Africa Cup of Nations Cote d’Ivoire 2023 Group B action resumes on Thursday, 18th January, 2024.
Tournament record holders, Egypt take on West African giants, Ghana in a 20h00 kick off with both sides aiming for nothing less than a victory.
Both sides have an impressive record in the tournament but have not really lived up to their high standards of late.
The unconvincing showing against Mozambique in the second half left a lot of questions of the last editions silver-medalists, while Ghana’s shock defeat to Cape Verde raised a lot of questions of the star-studded Black Stars team.
Both sides find themselves in a very tricky position of having to win Thursday’s match, with the so-called underdogs of the group Cape Verde and Mozambique currently high in confidence.
This will be the fifth TotalEnergies CAF AFCON meeting between the two giants.
They have already faced each other three times in groups (1 victory each, a draw and 2 goals on both sides) as well as once in the final which was won by Egypt in 2010 (1-0).
Attacking Gems on Either Side
There’s no doubting the attacking talents of Egypt. The front three of Salah, Mostafa and Trezeguet are dangerous and are always a goal threat.
In their last five matches, including the 2-2 draw last time out, Egypt have found the back of the net 13 times, an average of 2.6 goals per game.
While Ghana aren’t as efficient as their opponents, they boast the likes of Mohammed Kudus, the Ayew brothers, Antoine Semenyo and Inaki Williams as the spearhead of their attack.
It’s worrying that Kudus was out of the matchday squad on Sunday and the Black Stars will be hoping he can be fit on Thursday to drive their attack against the Pharaohs, who’ve already shown signs of weakness at the back the last time out.