Egypt trumps Senegal in first leg of WC qualifier

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Egypt trumps Senegal in first leg of WC qualification

Mohammad Salah’s Egypt beat Senegal of Sadio Mane in the first leg of their double header with a World Cup spot in Qatar on the line.

An own goal merely four minutes into the game by Senegal’s Saliou Ciss was enough to give Egypt a 1-0 win at the Cairo International Stadium.

The win was some consolation for Egypt as they were beaten six weeks ago by Senegal on penalties to win the Africa Cup of Nations. This time it was Mo. Salah’s turn to bag the bragging right between two of Liverpool’s best players as he set up the only goal of the contest.

Salah managed to beat the offside trap to reach the pass played over the top of the defense from Amr El Sulaya. The forward crashed the ball of the the bar before the rebound bounced off Saliou Ciss’ knee and into the net for a dream start for the home side after four minutes.

But a solitary goal was all that Egypt managed despite a capacity 75,000 crowd as Senegal proved more adventurous and will still feel confident about winning the tie on aggregate and advancing to the World Cup after a game where they squandered several chances.

Mane, as expected, was the heart of much of his team’s attacks and had an excellent chance eight minutes before half-time after opening up space to shoot, only to slip at the vital moment and see his shot balloon well wide.

The Liverpool winger also had a chance at the back post early in the second half but failed to make contact with the ball with Egypt’s defense stretched.

Senegal kept pressing until the final whistle in search of an equalizer, and a potentially vital away goal, but were kept at bay by some desperate defending.

It was the first time in Salah’s career that Egypt beat Senegal.

The away goals rule is still in use in African football despite being removed from competition in Europe this season which sets an exciting stage when the return leg takes place next week.

 

 

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