Egypt vs Zimbabwe Preview

Mohamed Salah of Egypt

This year’s tournament kicks off with a scintillating encounter between the hosts who are deemed as the tournament favourites and the Warriors of Zimbabwe who come into the competition with little or no pressure. The likes of Khama Billiat, Mohamed Salah, Mohammed Elneny, Knowledge Musona, Talent Chawapiwa and Ahmed Hegazi will be on display.

AFCON 2019 
Egypt vs Zimbabwe 
Friday 21 June 
Cairo International Stadium  
22:00 


To Win 
Egypt 3/10
Draw 36/10
Zimbabwe 11/1

Egypt

Egypt have won this tournament a record seven times and it took a dramatic comeback from Cameroon to snatch the title away from them in the last edition’s final. Home ground advantage will definitely favour the Pharaohs as their fans are known for their unwavering support which is often characterised by subjecting opponents to a great deal of hostility. To give you an idea how strong they are at home, the won all three of their qualifiers on their own backyard and only won one away from home.

Mohamed Salah is currently the best African player and to beat his club teammate Sadio Mane to this year’s individual award, he has to step up in the tournament. They both scored 22 goals in the English Premier League for their Liverpool and this tournament could be the tie-breaker. Salah is surrounded by the likes of Mohamed Elneny and Ahmed Hegazi who have international experience which makes the team spine very strong.

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Zimbabwe

Before I start previewing the fixture, let me give you some context, Zimbabwe are 150/1 to win the tournament which shows the difference in class between them and their opponents. However, they are not to be underestimated as players like Knowledge Musona, Evans Rusike, Khama Billiat can step up on the day and cause Egypt all sorts of problems which would see all the 11/1 punters smiling all the way to the bank.

They topped their qualification group which had DR Congo, Liberia and the Republic of the Congo! Their midfielder, Marshall Munetsi, has just earned a move to French Ligue 1 outfit, Stade de Reims and he should show the world what he is made of in games of this magnitude. Most of the players ply their trade in the PSL which will keep most South Africans interested in the encounter.

Prediction: Egypt (3/10)
I can label this a David vd Goliath encounter and Goliath will definitely win at home. To be honest, I’m backing Egypt to go all the way in the tournament and they could potentially win all their games.

Written by Benedict Ngwenya

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