We need to score more goals, says MOTM Alaa

Karim Farouk , Saturday 22 Jun 2019,
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Mahmoud Alaa
Egypt's defender Mahmoud Alaa (R) fights for the ball with Zimbabwe's midfielder Ovidy Karuru (Photo: AFP)

Defender Mahmoud Alaa underlined the importance of the winning start Egypt made against Zimbabwe in the Nations Cup opener on Friday but believes the team needs to improve if they are to win the title.

"I am very happy that we won our first game. We were determined to win the game for all these people who have come to support us since 1 o'clock," Alaa said after the game.

The Pharaohs grabbed a narrow 1-0 over Zimbabwe to go top of Group A. They will face DR Congo in their next game on Wednesday.

"We need to improve and score more goals in the upcoming games. After the first half we were in the lead, we didn't want to take any risks in order to protect our lead till the end," the 28-year old added.

Alaa was named Man of the Match after producing a solid performance at the back, making some timely tackles to thwart Zimbabwean attacks.

The Zamalek defender was a late choice by coach Javier Aguirre and he managed to establish himself, relegating regular starter Baher El-Mohamadi to the bench.

"I am delighted to win this award. While I was away from the national team, I was so motivated to develop myself and that's what happened and now I am a starter," Alaa concluded.

(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)

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Group A W D L P
Egypt
3 0 0 9
Uganda
1 1 1 4
DR Congo
1 0 2 3
Zimbabwe
0 1 2 1
Group B W D L P
Madagascar
2 1 0 7
Nigeria
2 0 1 6
Guinea
1 1 1 4
Burundi
0 0 3 0
Group C W D L P
Algeria
3 0 0 9
Senegal
2 0 1 6
Kenya
1 0 2 3
Tanzania
0 0 3 0
Group D W D L P
Morocco
3 0 0 9
Cote d'Ivoire
2 0 1 6
South Africa
1 0 2 3
Namibia
0 0 3 0
Group E W D L P
Mali
2 1 0 7
Tunisia
0 3 0 3
Angola
0 2 1 2
Mauritania
0 2 1 2
Group F W D L P
Ghana
1 2 0 5
Cameroon
1 2 0 5
Benin
0 3 0 3
Guinea Bissau
0 1 2 1