Egypt's Abou-Gabal is best keeper in Nations Cup, says Senegal's Mendy

Ahram Online , Tuesday 8 Feb 2022

Senegal's Edward Mendy, who was named as the African Nations Cup best keeper, said that Egypt's Mohamed Abou-Gabal, also known as Gabaski, is the one who deserved this award.

Mohamed Abogabal   Edouard Mendy
Combined images of Egypt s goalkeeper Mohamed Abogabal (L) and Senegal s goalkeeper Edouard Mendy (R).

The Chelsea keeper, 29, won the award after helping Senegal win their first-ever Nations Cup title after a 4-2 win over Egypt on penalties following a 0-0 draw in the final. 

The AFCON prize for Mendy came only a few weeks after he was named as the best goalkeeper in the World for 2021 by FIFA.

"Gabaski is the best goal keeper in the tournament," Mendy told MBC Masr television channel on Tuesday. "I spoke with him and I told him he is the best and he deserves it."

"Honestly, I was impressed by his performance during this tournament."

Abou-Gabal, who was only drafted in after first-choice keeper Mohamed El-Shennawi sustained an injury in the round of 16 clash against Cote d'Ivoire, was instrumental in helping Egypt reach the final.

His spot-kick heroics saw Egypt both defeat Cote d'Ivoire in the round of 16 and then Cameroon in the semifinal.

The Zamalek keeper was again impressive against Senegal in the final match, keeping the Teranga Lions scoreless for 120 minutes through two extra times with a series of superb stops.

Gabaski blocked an early penalty in the fourth minute from Liverpool star Sadio Mane and denied two near-certain goals from substitute Bamba Dieng in extra time.

He also saved a penalty from Bouna Sarr in the shootout but his teamates could not convert two of their spot-kicks, leading to a heartbreaking loss for the Pharaohs.

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