By Emmanuel Ebimoh
Egyptian striker, Mahmoud Trezeguet opened the goal chart in the opening match of the 2019 African Cup of Nations. It was the only goal the hosts, Egypt needed to give them a winning start in their game against The Warriors of Zimbabwe. The game was played in the 70,000 capacity Cairo International Stadium as the Pharaohs of Egypt, buoyed by cheers from their home supporters, hoped to get a clean sweep through their Zimbabwean counterparts.
It was a fast paced game. Zimbabwe’s goalkeeper Edmore Sibanda had a busy start with two saves inside the opening three minutes — both times touching the ball clear of his goal from headed efforts. The attack of Egyptian team, headed by their dreaded talisman, Mohammad Salah mounted continued attack on the Zimbabwean defence. Salah was involved in a slick passing move in the ninth minute that offered Abdallah El Said a chance to score the tournament’s opening goal but again Zimbabwe’s goalkeeper, Sibanda was on ground to prevent the goal.
But it wouldn’t last for long. Trezequet broke the deadlock.The Egyptian striker picked up the ball out wide, did a quick one-two pass with a team mate, and then made a body check to shake off the defence in the penalty box which opened room for himself to fire home a curling shot that gave Sibanda no chance.
It was the perfect start the Egyptian needed and they defended the goal to give them a precious first win in the competition to top Group A.
In the other games that will be played today, The Leopards of D.R Congo will play The Cranes of Uganda, Super Eagles of Nigeria will file up against Burundi Swallows of Burundi, and National Elephants of Guinea trade tackles against The Barea of Madagascar. What’s your prediction for the Nigeria/Burundi game? Will the Super Eagles soar high against their Burundian counterparts? Predict, Share, and Win.