The eagerly awaited Matchday 2 in Group B of AFCON 2023 is set to kick off on Thursday, January 18th, featuring a high-stakes encounter between two pre-tournament favorites, Egypt and Ghana. Both teams are desperate for a positive result after stumbling in their opening group matches.
Egypt, despite taking an early lead against Mozambique with Mostafa Mohamed’s lightning-fast goal, had to rely on a stoppage-time penalty from captain Mohamed Salah to salvage a point. The Pharaohs conceded more goals in this match than in their previous 11 AFCON group games combined. However, they remain determined to avoid a repeat of history, aiming to secure their first victory in the tournament since 1992.
On the other side, Ghana suffered a disappointing 2-1 defeat to Cape Verde in their opening match, extending their winless run at AFCON to five matches – their longest-ever streak in the competition. The Black Stars, once pre-game favorites, were outplayed by Cape Verde, who dominated in shots and possession.
The upcoming clash will be the fifth meeting between Egypt and Ghana at the Africa Cup of Nations. With a history of one win each and one draw in the group stage and an Egyptian victory in the final in 2010, the rivalry adds another layer of anticipation to this encounter.
Ghana’s chances could receive a significant boost if star midfielder Mohammed Kudus from West Ham is declared fit. Kudus missed the Cape Verde game due to a slight knock, but reports from Ghana Soccernet suggest he is making good progress in his recovery. Working closely with the medical team, Kudus has rejoined full-team training, sparking optimism that he will be available to face Egypt.
Bookmaker 1xBet provides odds that Kudus will score estimated at 4.80. As both teams vie for redemption and crucial points, football enthusiasts around the globe eagerly await the outcome of this pivotal AFCON 2023 showdown.