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Match report: Egypt, Mali play goalless draw at AFCON 2017

Match report: Egypt, Mali play goalless draw at AFCON 2017

The Pharoahs of Egypt could only force a draw with Mali in their African Cup of Nation (AFCON 2017) opening group game.

The post-match talk centered around the record breaking appearance of Egypt goalkeeper Essam El-Shenawy.

Match report: Egypt, Mali play goalless draw at AFCON 2017

Essam El-Hadary

El-Shewany, a four-time winner of the competition began the match on the bench, but was summoned when first-choice Ahmed El-Shenawy was unable to continue do to an apparent shoulder injury – winning his 148th cap at the age of 44 years and two days.

Neither Arsenal star Mohamed Elneny nor former Chelsea winger Mohamed Salah could inspire Egypt to a win against Mali.

Match report: Egypt, Mali play goalless draw at AFCON 2017

Salah in action for Egypt

It has been a feast or famine for Egypt over the last decade - they won three titles in a row between 2006 and 2010 - before failing to qualify for any of the next three.

Overall Mali were the better side and should have taken the lead or given a penalty when Marega’s pace in behind ought to have earned the Eagles a penalty in just the sixth minute.

Match report: Egypt, Mali play goalless draw at AFCON 2017

Egypt defender Ali Gabr (left) heads the ball clear under pressure from Lassana Coulibaly

Somehow, the clumsy Ali Gabr challenge went unpunished.

In the other Group D game, Ghana defeated Uganda 1 - 0 thanks to Andre Ayew's penalty.

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