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Salah brace against Tanzania seals AFCON comeback
Tanzania XI: Munish; Abdul, Aggrey, Nyoni, Mwinyi; Ulimwengu, Kazimoto, Himid, Farid; Maguri, Samatta
Egypt XI: El-Hadary; Fathi, Gabr, Rabia, Abdel-Shafy; Hamed, Elneny, El-Said; Salah, Mohsen, Trezeguet
In a match where neither side succeeded in dominating proceedings, real chances were few and far between.
Both sides wasted a few opportunities to take the lead in the first half, with Tanzania putting pressure on the visitors.
In the 44th minute, Roma star Mohamed Salah successfully converted a free-kick past a poorly-positioned Munish, with the wall of defenders also at fault.
Egypt would consider themselves lucky to lead at the break, given the mediocre performances from their midfielders and wingers.
Hector Cuper’s instructions in the second half were clear: sit back and hit the hosts on the counter. It was a tactic which played dividends in the 58th minute, when Salah raced clear to score his second goal of the match.
The remainder of the match was characterized by misplaced passes and awkward challenges, as the Pharaohs saw out a win that is crucial for their World Cup qualifying draw hopes.
More importantly, the win sees Egypt return to the African Cup of Nations for the first time since 2010, the last of their three-tournament winning streak.