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MBABANE – Sihlangu have their backs against the wall, as they visit African powerhouse Egypt in a tough Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) Qualifier tonight.

 The national side’s players will be like lambs to the slaughter when they invade the Al-Salam Stadium in Cairo for their third match of the AFCON qualifying campaign against ‘The Pharaohs’

Unlike the Biblical Moses who went to Egypt to demand the release of Israelites from Pharaoh; Sihlangu, who are on one point, are in Cairo as they are eager to get off the mark to remain in the race to the 2019 AFCON finals in Cameroon.  A loss from this tough encounter will be a recipe for disaster, as Sihlangu will be five points adrift of the qualifying spot.

The Pharaohs started their AFCON qualifiers campaign on a low note as they went down 1 – 0 against Tunisia in their opening match.


The Egypt Football Association appointed former Real Madrid and Spain defender Michel Salgado to assist Mexican gaffer Javier Aguirre.
On his first assignment, Salgado inspired Egypt to a 6 – 0 triumph against Niger Republic in their second game of the AFCON qualifiers.
The Tunisian’s Eagles of Carthage defeated Sihlangu 2 – 0 at the Mavuso Sports Centre in their last AFCON qualifiers encounter.

The Anthony Mdluli-led charges must surprise Egypt tonight if they are to stand a chance to qualify for the 2019 AFCON. The locals must be wary of Liverpool’s striker Mohamed Salah in this match.
The player has scored 44 goals for the English Premiership club in all competitions last season.

Salah, the ‘god’ of the Egyptians, will be the centre of attention across the world in tonight’s encounter against Sihlangu. Salah scored twice and missed two penalties in his last match for Egypt. Unlike the first leg against Tunisia, which saw Mdluli’s charges suffering from poor preparations and selection of players, it is a different scenario for the this match as the team had made some changes and there is the inclusion of experienced players.

The likes of captain Tony ‘TT’ Tsabedze, as an addition to this squad will come as a major boost for the locals. ‘TT’ missed the previous encounter against Tunisia due to an injury; his experience of international tournaments will be a plus for the nation’s pride.


The team will, however, suffer a great deal as experienced midfielder Felix Badenhorst has been left out of the squad that travelled to Cairo, Egypt. The player was reported by his South African National First Division team to have suffered a knock and received his national call up correspondence late. Four other key players were also left behind and these include Green Mamba’s gifted winger Mthunzi ‘Xavi’ Mkhontfo and versatile Young Buffaloes midfielder Siboniso Ngwenya, who are said to have been sidelined by injuries.

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