Egypt look to bounce back in Group J

Egypt look to bounce back in Group J
Mohamed Salah (L) of Egypt reacts from the bench

by Graeme Jackson

Thursday Sep 06, 2018. 10:16

Egypt will look to bounce back to winning form in Group J of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers when they host Niger at the Borg El Arab Stadium in Alexandria on Saturday, September 8, kick-off at 20h00 CAT.

Egypt are placed last on the group log after they opened their campaign with a 1-0 away loss to North African rivals Tunisia in June last year. Taha Yassine Kehnissi scored the only goal as the Pharaohs – who were runners-up at the last AFCON finals in 2017 – slumped to defeat in Rades.

Niger are level with Swaziland on one point on the Group J log after the teams shared the spoils in a goalless stalemate in Niamey. The Menas are aiming for a return to the continental finals after their appearances in 2012 and 2013.

Egypt come into the game on the back of a disappointing 2018 World Cup campaign which saw them suffer three successive defeats to Uruguay, hosts Russia and Saudi Arabia. They have a new coach in charge in the shape of Javier Aguirre, who succeeded Hector Cuper.

By contrast, Niger appear to be in fine form after recording a 3-3 draw with Central African Republic and a 2-1 win over Uganda in friendlies in late May and early June.

Egypt and Niger has clashed in three previous matches, according to FIFA’s statistics database. The Pharaohs are unbeaten, with two wins and a draw to their name. The teams’ most recent clash was a friendly in Doha in 2012 which was won 1-0 by Egypt.

Senegalese referee Maguette N’Diaye will take charge of the game in Alexandria. The other Group J match will be played on Sunday, September 9 and sees Swaziland host Tunisia in Manzini.

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