Morocco out for revenge against The Pharaohs in North African showdown

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Morocco will make their way into the Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium, Yaounde, with one thing in mind – and that is to revenge for loss they suffered to Egypt in the Quaterfinals of the Africa Cup of Nations five years go. 

In that game, the Atlas Lions matched Egypt pound for pound and looked set to continue their hoodoo status over their North African counterparts. However, Mahmoud Kahraba had other thoughts scoring three minutes from time to send Morocco packing out of the tournament. 

It is something Morocco will look to revenge going to the repeat of the same encounter, but this time in Cameroon. 

However, despite the Atlas Lions having a superior head-to-head stat with 14 win to Egypt’s three with 12 draws, it is not going to be an easy walk in the park for them. 

Egypt might have look far from being their best selves but their defensive approach has so far made it difficult to score against. Since their 1-0 loss to Nigeria in the group stages, they have not conceded a goal. Their approached is premised on an almost impenetrable defence that would rather draw and force the match into penalties, than lose it.  

In their last match against Ivory Coast they continued to keep a clean sheet even though they failed to score on the other hand, eventually winning the match on penalties. 

It is challenge Morocco will need to overcome if they are to have their own back against the Pharaohs, who are looking to extend their Afcon title-winning record to eight.  

Upfront, Liverpool striker Mohammed Salah has been struggling to find his scoring boots, making the Pharaohs almost toothless having only managed two goals so far in the tournament. 

Match Facts: 

This will be the seventh Africa Cup of Nations encounter between Egypt and Morocco, with Morocco winning three of the previous six (D1 L2), although Egypt won the most recent such match, in the quarter-finals in 2017 (1-0). 

  • Egypt have won each of their last four quarter-final matches at the Africa Cup of Nations, having progressed in just one of their previous five such games in the competition (L4).
  • Morocco have won six of their last eight Africa Cup of Nations matches (D2), scoring in every game in this run – they’re looking to reach the semi-finals of the competition for the first time since finishing runners-up to Tunisia in 2004.
  • Egypt have conceded just seven goals in their 20 games at the Africa Cup of Nations since 2010 (W14 D3 L3), keeping 14 clean sheets – only Gambia this year have conceded fewer goals per game (0.25, 1/4) than the Pharoah’s in that time (0.35).
  • Morocco’s RomainSaiss has accumulated an expected goals tally of 1.99 from his five attempts at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations, the highest xG of any player who’s yet to score in this year’s competition. – additional reporting by CAFONLINE