Cape Verde secured first place in Group B with a 2-2 draw against seven-time champions Egypt at the Africa Cup of Nations. The intense clash saw Cape Verde’s Benchimol scoring a superb goal just before halftime, but Egypt fought back with Trezeguet’s equalizer and Mostafa Mohamed’s brilliant stoppage-time goal. Despite the late drama, Bryan Teixeira’s 99th-minute equalizer ensured Cape Verde finished the group unbeaten.
In another Group B match, Ghana drew 2-2 with Mozambique, allowing Egypt to secure second place with three points. Egypt, however, faces uncertainty as star player Mohamed Salah, who missed the game due to a hamstring injury, may sit out the remainder of the tournament. Salah’s agent suggested a longer recovery period, casting doubt on his return even for the semi-finals.
Egypt coach Rui Vitoria expressed relief at qualifying for the next round, emphasizing the team’s need for rest in the hot and humid conditions. The record champions, last crowned in 2010, will face a last-16 tie in San-Pedro on Sunday, while Cape Verde looks ahead to their match in Abidjan on January 29.
The thrilling draw highlighted Cape Verde’s resilience, Egypt’s determination, and the tournament’s unpredictability, setting the stage for more exciting matches in the AFCON Last 16.