AFCON 2021: Nigeria VS Egypt Review — What we learnt from the game

AFCON 2021: Nigeria VS Egypt Review — What we learnt from the game

AFCON 2021: Nigeria VS Egypt Review — What we learnt from the game

AFCON 2021: Nigeria VS Egypt Review — What we learnt from the game

The all talked about cracker between the Super Eagles of Nigeria and Pharaohs of Egypt went as anticipated from fans and viewers with exhilarating skills showcased.

Match formation:
Nigeria (4-2-2-2): Okoye; Aina, Troost-Ekong, Omeruo (sub Ajayi 79), Sanusi; N’Didi, Aribo; Chukwueze (sub Ejuke 72), Simon (sub Iwobi 90+1); Iheanacho (sub Nwakali 80), Awoniyi (sub Sadiq 72)
Subs not used: Musa, Onyeka, Onyekuru, Akpeyi, Ebuehi, Uzoho, Ndah
Egypt (4-3-3): El Shanawy; Tawfik (sub Monem 12), Hegazy, Hamdy (sub Sherif 90), Fattoh (sub Ashraf h/t); Fathi, Trezeguet (sub Zizo 58), Elneny; Mohamed (sub Sobhi 58), Salah, Marmoush
Subs not used: Kamal, Ashour, Lasheen, Said, Alaa, Sobhy, Gad

The game which was played at the Garouna Stadium in Cameroon ended 1-0 in the favor of the Super Eagles through a sublime, world class goal by Kelechi Iheanacho. They had several chances either side of the break, with Taiwo Awoniyi brilliantly kept out by Mohamed El Shenawy, and a clumsy touch from Iheanacho causing him to spurn a chance to double his tally. Substitute Chidera Ejuke also had two chances to have buried the game but shot straight at the Egyptian goalie.

This win will give the Super Eagles a confidence boost into the next game, while Salah has to come firing to help his country. WithinNigeria takes a look at 5 things we learned from the game.

Nigeria can actually play good attacking football

AFCON 2021: Nigeria VS Egypt Review — What we learnt from the game

Few weeks into the tournament, Nigeria’s former coach Genort Rohr was sacked from his job. One of the reasons for this was the appalling football displayed under his tutelage. Nigerian football fans criticized his team’s pragmatic play especially during the last World Cup Qualifiers. However, today’s game which featured all the players the former coach had used, was a different case. The Eagles played a very entertaining and possession-based attacking football to the amazement & delight of football lovers.

The midfield led by Joe Aribo & Wilfred Ndidi bossed their Egyptian counterparts, lots of passes from the back were on display as the defence showed composure & confidence on the ball while the attackers led by Moses Simon were a constant menace to the Egyptians.

This is the kind of football the Super Eagles of old were known for especially when they mesmerized the world at the World Cup in USA 94 and the Atlanta Olympics in 96.

We hope coach Augustine Eguavoen will continue to forge this mentality in the minds of his players.

Kelechi Iheanacho has come of age

AFCON 2021: Nigeria VS Egypt Review — What we learnt from the game

Senior man Kelz as he is fondly called showed that he is a man who can lead the attack of the Super Eagles. Kelechi burst into limelight as a teenager when he won the best player at the 2013 U17 World Cup at U.A.E. Until today, he hadn’t played at any major senior tournament with Nigeria. Today showed a matured Kelechi is born as he carried his Nation on his wings.

After a seemingly quiet start to the game, the Leicester forward slammed home a shot from inside the area in the first-half from Joe Aribo’s headed knock-down, as the Super Eagles recorded the sixth 1-0 victory in the first eight matches of this tournament.

He continued to be a threat to the Egyptian defence and could have scored a hattrick if he was more composed on the ball and his first touch didn’t let him down on two different occasions. He ended the match as the Total player of the match to cap a very wonderful evening for the young Nigerian.

Nigerians will hope to see him continue his strong showing in front of goal against Sudan in the next game.

Moses Simon – Nigeria’s most dangerous attacker.

AFCON 2021: Nigeria VS Egypt Review — What we learnt from the game

In our article previewing the match against Egypt, we noted that if Nigeria had a chance to hurt Egypt, then Moses Simon has to be an important link. We weren’t wrong as he clearly showed why he was the most dangerous player on the pitch throughout the game. Although he can play on either side of the wing, the attacker was deployed as a left winger by coach Austin Eguavoen and he was a constant menace throughout the match.

His pace, stamina, strength and most importantly his dribbling abilities were second to none has he drilled the Egyptian right back time and time and again through the match. It was his deflected cross that led to the opening and only goal of the game that saw Nigeria becoming victorious.

Apart from his attacking play, he also contributed to the defence as he helped protect Zaidu Sanisi, the Super Eagles left back.

Once he adds goals to his game and the Super Eagles goes far in the tournament, we may have a contender for player of the tournament.

The Super Eagles are surely one of the strongest contenders at this years AFCON

AFCON 2021: Nigeria VS Egypt Review — What we learnt from the game

In a totally dominant display, the Super Eagles showed that they aren’t in the tournament to count the numbers. Beating one of the strongest teams in the competition by keeping them on the back foot for most of the game, subjecting them to just 2 shots on target compared to 15 of theirs is a strong warning to other contenders that Nigeria shouldn’t be taken lightly.

It’s still early days into the competition but the victory over Egypt is a strong sign of things to come. Having won bronze at the last AFCON hosted by Egypt, the Super Eagles of Nigeria will be hoping to take it a step further and probably win the AFCON for a 4th time.

No Salah, No party for Egypt

AFCON 2021: Nigeria VS Egypt Review — What we learnt from the game

Egypt’s lackluster performance for most of the game against Nigeria was largely due to their over-reliance on Mo’ Salah. The Liverpool attacker was prevented from settling into the game by a rampant and domineering Nigerian defense. This shut the attack of the Egyptians who couldn’t do anything without their talisman.

This should be a worrisome sign for the coach as opponents will see this as a good advantage over the Egyptians in subsequent games. Coach Carlos Quieroz must find a way of helping his most dangerous player come alive in this tournament, else it might be an AFCON to forget for the Pharaohs. With the arsenals in this possession, the Egyptian coach must find a way of reliving the burden on Mo’ Salah.

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