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Africa Cup of Nations 2019: Egypt v Zimbabwe - Egypt's Predicted XI, Injury News and More

ANALYST
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165   //    21 Jun 2019, 17:22 IST

Saudi Arabia v Egypt: Group A - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia
Saudi Arabia v Egypt: Group A - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia

The host nation Egypt will kick-off the 32nd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations in their Group A fixture against Zimbabwe.

Heading into the biennial intracontinental competition as the runner-ups from the previous edition, Javier Aguirre's men will be looking ahead to continuing their extraordinary record in the competition when playing in front of their home crowd.

The Pharaohs, who are clear favorites at the tournament, have been in impressive form in their preparation for the 24-team competition, winning both of their warm-up ties against Tanzania and Guinea.


Team News

Egypt are expected to field a strong squad for the tournament-opener as they will look forward to kick-off their pursuit of a record-extending eighth title with a victory.

They go up against Zimbabwe, a side against whom they've never tasted defeat at home turf and Aguirre has named a well-balanced 23-man squad with the optimum blend of experience and youth from which he will choose a final XI.

Naturally, a lot is expected from Liverpool's Mohamed Salah, who joined the national side on the back of a wonderful season, filled with crucial goals for the Reds capped off with a UEFA Champions League to his name.

There are no ongoing suspensions or injuries to any of the players at the moment.

Injuries: None

Suspensions: None

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Predicted Lineup

Though the Mexican manager has been experimenting with his squad throughout the qualifying campaign right up to the latest friendly against Guinea, there are few guaranteed starters under him, which include Mo Salah and Elneny.

A 4-2-3-1 formation allows Aguirre to utilize the players at his disposal to the best of their abilities and also give just add the right amount of attacking flair to the team while also being solid in the midfield.

Experienced goalkeeper El Shanawy is almost a no-brainer when it comes to whom to start between the sticks.

The burly center-half duo of West Brom defender Hegazi and Zamalek's Mahmoud Alaa will find their places at the heart of The Pharaoh's defense.

Captain Elmohamdy will be taking his place on the right flank of the defense ahead of Omar Gaber, who scored in the team's 3-1 win over Guinea while joining him on the other flank will be the only proper left back named in the 23-man squad, Ayman Ashraf.

Elneny and Tomar Hamed will assume the duties as the box-to-box midfielders and act as the first line of defense as well as the wellspring of attacking opportunities behind an exciting frontline that has scored 20 goals scored in their last eight matches.

Veteran striker Mohsen is expected to lead the attack as the lone striker, with Salah starting on the right flank paired up with Trezeguet on the left flank, with Warda in the No.10 position.

Predicted XI: El Shanawy, Hegazi, Alaa, Elmohamdy, Ashraf, Elneny, Hamed, Salah, Trezeguet, Warda, and Mohsen.


AFCON 2019 Match 1 - Egypt v Zimbabwe: Egypt's predicted lineup
AFCON 2019 Match 1 - Egypt v Zimbabwe: Egypt's predicted lineup

On paper it looks like a solid playing XI, that can lift their first honors since 2010.

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