Patience was the key reason behind Egypt’s 3-2 late victory over Tunisia, according to the Pharaohs’ assistant coach Michel Salgado, who also hailed the impact of the late game-winning goal by Liverpool star Mohamed Salah.
Egypt secured a precious 3-2 win over Tunisia in an African Cup of Nations qualifier in Alexandria on Friday, the fourth successive victory under the guidance of Mexican coach Javier Aguirre.
“I am happy with the players’ performance. Our efforts were crowned with the victory and the third goal by Salah caused an explosion in the stadium with the wide celebrations by the attending fans,” Spain’s former right-back Salgado said after the match.
As the result was heading to a 2-2 draw, star winger Salah was on target, chipping a last-gasp killer to hit the third, just one minute before the final whistle, to grant Egypt their first victory over the Tunisians in 16 years.
“Our main target was to create many chances against their goal. We were alerted of their defensive strategy. The situation became more difficult when they scored their first goal, but scoring the equalizer before the break was very important for us,” explained Salgado.
“We were patient against Tunisia and that was very important as we managed to achieve our main target of the match,” the former Real Madrid star added.
Under the helm of Aguirre, Egypt has crushed Niger 6-0 and defeated eSwatini 4-1 and 2-0, home and away respectively, to seal passage to next year’s Nations Cup finals in Cameroon with two games to spare in Group J.
Egypt and Tunisia are now both at 12 points in a group that also includes Niger and eSwatini, who lost all hopes to qualify to the Cameroon finals.
However, Egypt still sit second in Group J behind Tunisia who are favorites to finish on top, given their better head-to-head record virtue of the away goals they scored against the Pharaohs. Tunisia defeated Egypt 1-0 in their opening qualifier in June 2017.
Tunisia meet eSwatini and Egypt play Niger away from home in the last round of games in Group J next March.