Afcon 2019 Wrap: Salah Shines for Egypt, Ghana Shocked

Mohamed Salah scored twice and missed two penalties as Egypt made a dream debut under Mexican coach Javier Aguirre by crushing Niger 6-0 Saturday in Africa Cup of Nations qualifying.

Liverpool ace Salah was quickly in the thick of the action in Alexandria, winning a first-minute penalty which was blocked.

After Marwan Mohsen and Ayman Ashraf goals gave the 2018 World Cup flops a two-goal edge, Salah had another penalty saved, but scored from the rebound for a 3-0 halftime advantage.

The Liverpool sharpshooter, who scored 32 English Premier League goals last season in his first campaign at Anfield, created the fourth goal for rising star Salah Mohsen.

Salah netted the fifth and Mohamed Elneny from Arsenal completed the rout with a goal two minutes into stoppage time.

Despite the huge victory margin, Egypt trail Tunisia in Group J on the head-to-head rule having lost 1-0 away to the north Africans in the first round 15 months ago.

Former Dutch star Clarence Seedorf survived a scare in his debut as coach of Cameroon, who fought back to draw 1-1 with lowly-ranked Comoros in the southeastern Africa island state.

El Fardou Ben Mohamed from Red Star Belgrade gave a nation ranked 102 places below the Cup of Nations title-holders an early lead on an artificial pitch in steamy conditions.

It took the Indomitable Lions a further 65 minutes to level through French top-tier player Stephane Bahoken, and spare Seedorf’s blushes.

Cameroon qualify automatically for the 2019 tournament as hosts, but are competing in Group B to gain match practice instead of having to rely on meaningless friendlies.

There was plenty of Group K drama with Zambia and shock 2017 Cup of Nations qualifiers Guinea-Bissau snatching away draws in stoppage time.

Mozambique went ahead in additional time against Guinea-Bissau only to concede in the 97th minute and had to settle for a 2-2 draw in the top-of-the-table Maputo showdown.

Belgian Sven Vandenbroeck, an assistant coach of the 2017 Cameroon Cup of Nations-winning team, debuted as Zambia boss with a fortunate 1-1 draw against Namibia.

Justin Shonga levelled for Zambia in stoppage time when his free-kick was deflected into the corner of the net in Windhoek.

Ghana suffered a surprise 1-0 defeat to 10-man Kenya in a Group F 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier at the Moi International Sports Centre in Nairobi on Saturday afternoon.

Nicholas Opoku’s own goal was the difference between the two teams in the Kenyan capital as the Harambee Stars clinched an historic win over their more fancied opponents.

Victory moves the Harambee Stars level on points with both Ghana and Sierra Leone, who are away to Ethiopia on Sunday.

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