VIDEO: Salah sends Egypt through to Africa’s final World Cup qualifying round
Egypt starting XI: Sherif Ekramy; Ahmed Fathi, Wael Gomaa, Ahmed Hegazy, Ahmed Shedid; Hossam Ashour, Amr El-Sulaya; Ahmed Eid (Ahmed Temsah), Mohamed Abou-Treika (Abdullah El-Said), Mohamed Salah; Ahmed Gaafar (Ahmed Elmohamady).
FC Basel winger Mohamed Salah, who celebrated his 21st birthday yesterday, was once again Egypt’s savior after finishing off a superb play by the Pharaohs on the 42nd minute. Abou-Treika sent a majestic through-ball to Ahmed Fathi who found Mohamed Salah at the top of the box before the latter scored his 15th international goal with a low strike taken first-time, in what was otherwise an uneventful first-half.
Egypt continued to press in the second-half but wasted incredible chances falling to the likes of Temsah, Elmohamady (who replaced Ahmed Gaafar), Abou-Treika and even Salah, as the Pharaohs failed to double their lead in Maputo.
The Mambas had a few chances of their own, including a well-placed strike which forced Sherif Ekramy into an incredible save, but Egypt managed to continue their perfect run in World Cup qualifying and hang onto their first competitive clean sheet since June 1, 2012 – when they last faced Mozambique.
Despite Bob Bradley’s side having one final group game on Sept. 5 against Guinea, the Pharaohs are now officially qualified for the final two-legged round where they will meet one of the other nine group leaders for a place at next year’s World Cup in Brazil.