Afcon roundup: Salah suffers hamstring injury as Egypt draw against Ghana



Afcon roundup: Salah suffers hamstring injury as Egypt draw against Ghana

The Egypt captain, Mohamed Salah, was forced off with a hamstring injury before his side twice came from behind to draw 2-2 with Ghana in the Africa Cup of Nations 

Egypt and Liverpool face an anxious wait to discover the extent of the problem after the 31-year-old left the field in the last minute of the first half of a thrilling Group B contest.

Salah slumped dejectedly to the ground with an apparent hamstring injury and, after briefly being attended to by Egypt’s medical staff, handed over the armband to defender Ahmed Hegazi as he was replaced by Mostafa Fathi.

Salah, who scored a stoppage-time equaliser from the penalty spot as ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฌ drew 2-2 with Zimbabwe ๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ผ 

in their first group game, had earlier been involved in a furious row with referee Pierre Atcho after Omar Marmoush went down in the area. He appeared to be appealing for a penalty despite a free-kick being given against Marmoush and the former was perhaps fortunate not to be shown a yellow card for his vehement protests.

Despite the loss of Salah, Egypt started the second half well and had a goal disallowed for offside in the 51st minute before the impressive Marmoush was gifted the chance to equalise. The 24-year-old pounced on a woeful backpass from Iรฑaki Williams and calmly rounded goalkeeper Richard Ofori before sliding the ball into an empty net from a narrow angle.

Parity lasted just two minutes however, Kudus receiving a pass from Denis Odoi in the area and seeing his left-footed shot take a slight deflection off the unfortunate Mohamed Abdelmonem and beyond goalkeeper Mohamed El Shenawy.

The breathless action showed no signs of slowing and Egypt equalised for the second time three minutes later, with Ghana again guilty of contributing to their own downfall. Osman Bukari was dispossessed by Trรฉzรฉguet on the right-hand side of his own area and the Trabzonspor midfielder drove to the byline before pulling the ball back for Mostafa Mohamed to stab home.

The former Middlesbrough and Birmingham full-back Emilio Nsue scored a hat-trick as Equatorial Guinea roared to a 4-2 Africa Cup of Nations win over Guinea-Bissau. Nsue, now 34 and captaining his national side as well as leading the attack, hit the first treble at an Afcon since 2008. The Elephants now have four points from their first two matches in Group A following Sunday’s surprise 1-1 draw with Nigeria.

The opening goal arrived in the 21st minute following a poor clearance by Guinea-Bissau’s goalkeeper Ouparine Djoco. Pablo Ganet lifted the ball over the back-line into the path of Nsue, who charged through on goal and slotted his finish past Djoco.

Guinea-Bissau, beaten by hosts Ivory Coast in their opening match, equalised after 37 minutes when Mauro Rodrigues sent a low cross into the box and defender Esteban turned the ball into his own net. Moments later Guinea-Bissau were awarded a penalty after Saul Coco appeared to bring down Franculino Dju in the area, but the decision was overturned by VAR.

Instead another mistake at the start of the second half gifted Equatorial Guinea the lead again. Sori Manรฉ failed to deal with a long ball and Josete Miranda was able to race clear and fire home.

That advantage was extended in the 51st minute when Djoco missed Basilio Ndong’s cross and Nsue finished at the far post. Nsue, who played more than 100 games in the Championship between 2014 and 2018, completed his treble on the hour after rounding Djoco. The goal was initially ruled out by an offside flag, but after an anxious wait was eventually given by VAR.

Nsue therefore became the first player to achieve the feat since Morocco’s Soufiane Alloudi 16 years ago and joined an illustrious list of Afcon hat-trick heroes including Samuel Eto’o, Hossam Hassan and Benni McCarthy. Ze Turbo pulled another back for Guinea-Bissau on the stroke of full-time.

A William Troost-Ekong penalty gave Nigeria a 1-0 victory over hosts Ivory Coast.

The Nigeria captain struck from the spot early in the second half in Abidjan as the Super Eagles claimed their first victory of the tournament and leapfrogged the Ivorians in Group A. Ivory Coast spurned a host of chances and paid the price after Ola Aina was adjudged to have fouled Victor Osimhen in the area following a review by VAR.

The result meant Nigeria drew level with Equatorial Guinea on four points in the group, while Ivory Coast have three with one game to play.


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