Mané vs Salah: Egypt eliminated Cameroon and will face Senegal in the African Cup Final

Again Mohamed Gabaski, as in the round of 16 against the Ivory Coast, emerged as the hero of Egypt, who qualified for the final of the Africa Cup thanks to an excellent performance by his goalkeeper in the penalty shootout, in which he stopped two shots to give victory to his team.

Gabaski’s saves are no longer an act of luck for Egypt, which a few days ago enjoyed starting their goalkeeper due to the injury of the starter in the round of 16, Mohamed El Shenawy. So, Gabaski’s appearance in the penalty shootout was providential and he has remained in his place as a guaranteed goalkeeper.

Cameroon, after the Ivory Coast, was Gabaski’s next victim. After a goalless draw, penalties decided the ticket to the final and the host was condemned after missing three of his attempts. Harold Moukoudi Y James Lea Siliki they were met by two dives from Gabaski, while Clinton N’Jie sent Cameroon’s fourth shot skyrocketing. Egypt did not miss any and got its prize.

Now, Senegal already has a rival. He will face “Los Faraones” next Sunday at the Paul Biya stadium in Yaoundé. They will fight for the title against a team that already knows what it’s like to win the Africa Cup of Nations and that suffered to get through the round in a duel that could perfectly have been an early final.

Both Cameroon and Egypt fought relentlessly to get out of the semi-finals. Twelve trophies were displayed on the pitch, five from Cameroon and seven from Egypt. Almost nothing. Two giants of African football face to face and in a deafening atmosphere favorable to the host, who during the first half went over his rival.

Cameroon, during the first 45 minutes, was the total dominator of the match. He accumulated all the clear chances against an overwhelmed rival whose best man, Mohammed Salah, it was totally cancelled. He could hardly do anything except watch and hope he didn’t go to the locker room with the score against him in order to turn the situation around in the second half.

the men of Carlos Queiroz they withstood the gale, but received many scares. The most powerful gave it Michael Ngadeu, who sent a header to the crossbar of the goal defended by Gabaski at the exit of a corner that was left without a prize for very little. But he was not the only one, he also tried without success Vincent Aboubakar, but the lack of aim saved Egypt.

“The Pharaohs”, who unsuccessfully searched for Salah during the first act, came out with renewed airs with the entrance of Trezeguet, who took Soulia off the field. Queiroz stirred up the game and Egypt showed a different face than in the previous 45 minutes. With longer possessions, he went on to dominate the duel, although Cameroon’s counterattacks lurked mercilessly.

It was Salah who had the clearest chance for Egypt. Inexplicably, the Liverpool player wasted it. In speed, in a one-on-one against Onana, practically sold half way out, he tried to dribble past the Cameroonian goalkeeper, who, however, held off Salah’s attempt and narrowly saved his team.

Before the extension, Egypt had another cartridge left. Oum Gouet, with a violent strike, came close to celebrating Egypt’s goal, but his attempt narrowly missed. There were twenty minutes to go and there was still time for an expulsion, that of Carlos Queiroz, who had to leave in protest.

In the extra half hour almost nothing happened, just a last-gasp approach from Ramada Sobhi. His pass of death, between the desperation of Samuel Eto’o from the stands, could not be finished off by any of the four Egyptians who entered with everything to finish the game.

Penalties were inevitable and in them Gabaski went from being a hero by accident due to the injury of a teammate to becoming a hero with capital letters. Without a doubt, if Egypt wins the Africa Cup of Nations, part of the blame will be on the goalkeeper of “The Pharaohs”, at the moment more decisive than his star, Mohamed Salah.