SenegalFIFA World CupVS
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In a repeat of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations final, Egypt take on Senegal in the first leg of this Third Round 2022 World Cup qualification match-up, with a place at Qatar at stake.
A 4-2 penalty shootout victory, after a goalless 120 minutes, saw Senegal win the Africa Cup of Nations for the first time in their history last month, and they face-off against Egypt again in another huge encounter.
Nothing can split these in the market with both nations being available at 15/8 (bet365) for the win, and the draw being available at odds of 39/20 (SportNation).
Read on for our comprehensive match preview and the best football tips.
There are several factors that suggest we’re very unlikely to witness a goal fest of any sort here. The obvious starting point is their clash in the African Cup of Nations final, where Egypt took a pretty cautious approach. Senegal don’t generally concede many themselves too, but they were the ones on the front foot the most in that game. However, Egypt’s compact nature held them off for the full 120 minutes.
Given what’s on the line in this game, it wouldn’t be surprising if we saw a similar approach from both sides, ultimately meaning another tight affair.
In seven total games at AFCON 2021, Egypt kept five clean sheets and conceded just two goals in the whole tournament. It represents well how they go about getting successful results (especially in important matches against tough opponents) - by having a solid foundation.
Senegal have a bit more about them when it comes to going forward, but they might be happy with getting out of this first leg with a draw to take back home with them.
It was a fairly straightforward passage to this qualification round for Egypt as they managed 14 points out of a possible 18 in a group containing Gabon, Libya and Angola.
Their wounds might not have fully healed from that penalty shootout heartbreak in AFCON only a month ago, but they’ll see this as a great opportunity to exact some revenge on Senegal.
Egypt haven’t lost a World Cup qualifier at home since way back in 2004, so they’ll have plenty of confidence they can take a positive result with them heading into the second leg in Senegal.
Senegal won five out of their six games in the qualification group (drawing the other), and they’ll certainly have the mental edge over their opponents here.
It’ll be interesting to see how Senegal manager Aliou Cisse approaches this one given the Cairo International Stadium isn’t an easy place to visit.
Regardless, Senegal have an entertaining flow about them going forward. Liverpool star Sadio Mane is the talisman of their attack, and they’re not short of world class talent in other areas too with Kalidou Koulibaly marshaling the defence, and Edouard Mendy between the sticks.
Egypt and Senegal have met a total of eight times before, with the latter nation edging the head-to-head record with four wins, compared to Egypt’s three.
Out of those eight meetings, six of them have seen under 1.5 goals, further enhancing our selection for this game.
In their AFCON final clash, it was Sadio Mane who struck the decisive penalty in the shootout, this after having a spot-kick saved by Egypt goalkeeper Gabaski early on in the game.
The Cairo International Stadium is a multi-use all-seater facility that has a capacity of 75,000. It opened back in 1960 and has had several major renovations since.
It has an oval structure and is well renowned for creating a tremendous atmosphere.
A fascinating tie for a place in the 2022 World Cup. It’s both nation’s first match since they faced off in the Africa Cup of Nations in February, and one that is very hard to predict.
Expect Egypt to be their usual defensive-minded selves, but at home in this first leg, they might make more of a push in the latter stages of the 90 minutes. Senegal will still be riding high after their AFCON triumph, but Egypt are very strong on home soil, so it’s unlikely there’ll be much splitting them after this contest.