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2022 World Cup Qualifiers

Egypt Face Stern Test In Gabon

Egypt will face a stern test of their credentials when they face Gabon in their second 2022 World Cup Group F qualifier on Sunday night. The match is set to kick-off at 19h00 GMT at the Stade de Franceville.

The Pharaohs opened their campaign with a narrow 1-0 win over Angola at the 30 June Stadium in Cairo, with the lone goal coming from a penalty that was converted by Al Ahly stars Magdi Afsha.

Hossam El-Badry, the Egypt coach, will be welcoming Mohamed Salah who missed the group opener due to on-going travel restrictions related to Covid-19.

El-Badry has hinted that the attacking prowess on display against Angola is unlikely to be repeated against Gabon: “Our group is balanced, the competition is difficult and all the participating teams aim to qualify.

“There are no easy matches, everyone saw how Lybia beat Gabon in the opening game, they will be trying to recover from their first defeat.

“I expect Gabon to be tough opponents, but we are aiming for valuable three points. All we can do is stay fully focused.

“We studied Gabon well, they have many impressive elements,, but every team have their weakness points.”

On the other side, the pressure is high on coach Patrice Neveu who needs a strong showing against Egypt  (and a good qualification campaign overall) to keep his spot as Panthers boss.

Gabon lost 2-1 to Libya in their opening Group F  of 2022 World Cup qualifiers that was played away in Benghazi on last Wednesday.

The Panthers had taken an early lead courtesy of Andre Poko but the Mediterranean Knights drew level through defender Ali Salama with Sanad Al Ouarfali scoring a late winner.

A better show is expected from Gabon captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang against Egypt as he failed to see much of the ball against Libya.

Coach Neveu has stressed that they will be doing everything they can do for a victory over the Pharaohs;We suffered a lot in our last game against Lybia because of our lack of discipline on the pitch.

To win our remaining games, we need to be more united, patient, and apply our own style.

“We will do everything we can for the three points tomorrow, we need to get back to the qualification race.”

Gambian referee Bakary Gassama will be the man in charge of the confrontation between Gabon and Egypt and he will be assisted by his countrymen, Abdelaziz Bolul Jawa, Nafali Chargo as first and second assistant referees.

Both teams have faced each other three times in recent years with the most recent one being 16-years ago where Egypt beat Gabon 4-0 in Cairo.

The other Group F match sees Angola and Libya meet in Luanda on Tuesday evening, kick-off at 19h00 GMT.







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