It could still be too early to count the chicks but make no mistake about Egypt’s ability to retain their Nations Cup title. They’re just too good to be counted out.
On top of being the record winners of the African Nations Cup with six titles, Egypt could be on course to make further record as the first team to win three back-to-back African titles.
The Pharaohs put aside their frustrations of not qualifying for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa as their came from behind to beat Nigeria 3-1.
You can say Nigeria’s goal came against the run of play and they could have been 2-0 up before the Egyptians found a deserved equalizer and the winner.
After most people’s pre-tournament, favorites Ivory Coast only managing a 0-0 against underdogs Burkina Faso, Egypt made their intent very clear with an excellent performance against the Super Eagles, another one of the tournament favorites.
Nigeria have always been a disappointment when you expected them to be on top of things and Tuesday night was yet another proof of that.
It’s very unfortunate that we haven’t seen Ghana, one of the tournament favorites in action after their would be opening game against Togo didn’t go ahead as early scheduled after the latter withdrew from the tournament after the attacks on their convoy by rebels last Friday.
Against a highly talented Nigerian side full of professionals and with potential to be a lot more successful than they have been, Egypt proved why they have won the title a record six times including the last two editions.
The draw between Mozambique and Guinea in what was a surprisingly very entertaining game, gave Nigeria an early lifeline because all they (Super Eagles) need to do will be to win their next two group games and hence qualify to the knockout stage.
In football, especially the African Nations Cup, anything is possible but still both Egypt and Nigeria will be favorites to go through in this group as Mozambique and Guinea don’t seem to be good enough to shock the old cliché of form being temporally and class being permanent (Nigeria anyone?).