A 2-0 victory over Mozambique was enough for Egypt to attain a quarter-final place in the 2010 African Cup of Nations. The breakthrough didn’t come until the second half, when Dario Khan diverted an awkward Fathi cross into the back of the Mozambique net. Mohamed Gedo made it 2-0 late on, after he hit a superb volley on the turn, making it two goals from two substitute appearances in the competition.
The win means the Pharaohs have now gone 15 games without defeat in the ANC, a record for the continental tournament. It is a different story for Mozambique, who find themselves fighting for progression in a must win match against Nigeria.
The Mambas were looking the most likely with the game still in its infancy, creating the better chances. But a few long range efforts from Goncalves Fumo showed that they weren’t confident of outplaying Egypt, but instead hoped to snatch a goal wherever they could. But the passing play from the Pharaohs wasn’t as fluent as we have come to expect, with even Ahmed Hassan misplacing passes.
Hassan showed moments of brilliance, but wasn’t at his best in the first 45
As the first half progressed, Egypt were beginning to find their feet, as Emad Moteab put the ball into a dangerous possession, but support from his team-mates eluded striker. Mahmoud Shikabala and Mohamed Zidan both had tantalising chances, but the Mambas stood firm in defence.
After an all-in-all uninspiring first half, Egypt got what they deserved when Dario Khan turned the ball into his own net. The goal would have brought back images of the defender’s own goal in Mozambique’s opening match against Benin. The Mambas did, however, respond in positive fashion, with Tico-Tico squandering the pick of the chances. They did think they had levelled the scores in the 58thminute, but Almiro Lobo’s run was deemed offside.
Mohamed Gedo did put the game to bed ten minutes from time after receiving Moteab’s pass. The striker, who only recently broke into the Egypt squad, turned and hit a ferocious volley which shot past the Mozambique goalkeeper in a flash. That was his second goal in as many matches, having clinched the Nigeria game also, coming off the bench in each.
Supersub Gedo sealed the game late on
So Egypt have now qualified for the last eight of the competition, and will face the Group D runners up no matter what happens in their final group match against Benin. For Mozambique, they will have to beat Nigeria if they want to progress any further in the competition. And despite the defeat, the Mambas’ boss Mart Nooij was full of praise for his team.
“We made it very hard for Egypt, who are the reigning African champions,” he said.
“We gave away a goal early in the second half and so had to chase the game, otherwise it would have been a lot more difficult for them to beat us.”
Egypt:El Hadari, Said (El Mohamady 48), Gomaa, Fathallah, Moawad, Fathi, Abd Rabou, Hassan, Shikabala (Gedo 68), Zidan (Eid 57), Moteab.
Subs Not Used: Abdoul-Saoud, Salem, El Sakka, Ghaly, Tawfik, Wahid, Abdelshafy, Raouf, Hamdy.
Mozambique:Kampango, Chapanga, Khan, Sitoe, Paito, Simao, Lobo, Domingues, Bila (Parruque 87), Goncalves (Josemar 52), Tico-Tico (Hagy 68).
Subs Not Used: Cossa, Carimo, Monteiro, Helder Pelembe, Fanuel Massinga, Francisco Massinga, Vaz, Zinedine, Lama.