A last-gasp Mohamed Salah penalty claimed a two all draw for Egypt against a spirited Mozambique side in their opening Group B clash at the Africa Cup of Nations on Sunday evening.
Mostafa Mohamed gave the Pharaohs an early lead after just 2 minutes, but second-half goals from Witi and substitute Clesio Baque looked to have won it for the underdogs, Mozambique. However, Salah kept his cool to convert a 97th-minute spot kick and prevent an opening-day upset.
The seven-time champions started brightly, capitalising on some early Mozambique nerves. A dangerous ball into the box by Mohamed Salah was latched onto by Mustapha Mohamed, who made no mistake slotting home. But Os Mambas grew into the game, keeping the Egyptian attack at bay for large periods. Some last-ditch defending prevented a calamitous own goal on the brink of halftime, as Egypt held their 1#0 lead until the break.
The complexion of the match changed 10 minutes into the second half. Against the run of play, Witi rose highest to head Mozambique level from a teasing cross. The underdogs then turned the game on its head on 58th minutes of play when substitute Baque played through on goal to coolly finish and put his side ahead.
A frenetic ending saw Egypt pile on late pressure in search of an equaliser. After consulting VAR for a penalty, Salah stepped up in the 7th minute of injury time to slot home and earn his country a share of the spoils.
The draw leaves Group B delicately poised. Egypt next faces Ghana on Wednesday, while Mozambique will look to build on their impressive performance against Cape Verde.
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