Another mouth-watering group opening is scheduled for Tuesday at the Estadio Roumde Adjia in Group D of the Africa Cup of Nations, when two African powerhouses in Nigeria and Egypt square off.
The two teams have been rivals since 1960, when Nigeria defeated Egypt 2-1 in a friendly, and while the Super Eagles will be pursuing their fourth crown, the Pharaohs will be attempting to conquer the continent for a record-extending eighth time.
TIP: Both Teams To Score
- Nigeria are averaging 1.5 goals scored per game across their last six outings.
- Egypt scored at least once within 90 minutes in 15 of their last 17 matches.
- Three of the last five H2H meetings saw both teams score.
This is a clash of African giants
This could be the best of the first group stage matches, as three-time AFCON champions Nigeria square off against record seven-time AFCON champions Egypt in a showdown of African powers. Both nations are expected to advance from this group, so it's unsurprising to see these two fight toe-to-toe in search of a positive start.
Nigeria's squad is stacked with excellent players, many of whom play in Europe's top divisions, including no fewer than five in the English Premier League. Notably, Leicester's Kelechi Iheanacho assisted on three goals against Manchester City recently, and it would be unsurprising if he provided the outlet for Nigeria in this match.
Egypt, on the other side, is led by its poster boy, Liverpool's talismanic forward Mohamed Salah.
Egypt advanced to the Round of 16 in the 2019 edition after winning the tournament three straight times between 2006 and 2010. As a result, the Pharaohs will attack this match from the start in pursuit of a better performance.
Overall, we expect that both clubs will score in this battle between two sides looking to rebound from recent dismal tournament performances. However, we believe they may finish up canceling each other out, which is why we believe 1-1 is a reasonable correct score selection.
Nigeria XI: Okoye; Sanusi, Troost-Ekong, Omeruo, Aina; Onyeka, Ndidi, Aribo; Chukwueze, Iwobi, Iheanacho
Egypt XI: El-Shennawy; Daoud, Hegazi, Fatouh, Ashraf; Fathi, El-Sulya, Elneny; Mohamed, Sherif, Salah
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