File Photo: Egypt s forward Mohamed Salah (L) fights for the ball with Guinea-Bissau s midfielder Moreto Cassama during the Group D Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) 2021 football match between Guinea-Bissau and Egypt at Stade Roumde Adjia in Garoua taken on January 15, 2022. AFP
Guinea, the best-ranked team among Egypt's opponents, are likely to be the Pharaohs' biggest challengers for top spot.
They reached the Nations Cup round of 16 in the last two editions and last met Egypt in a friendly in June 2019, which they lost 3-1 in a warm-up for the biennial tournament.
Malawi also improved of late, having booked a last-16 berth at the Nations Cup in Cameroon earlier this year before narrowly losing 2-1 to pre-tournament favourites Morocco.
Egypt beat Malawi 2-1 in their last meeting - a friendly game in 2015.
Ethiopia, who bowed out at the group stage in the Nations Cup in Cameroon, are the rank outsiders in the group. They have not played Egypt since suffering a 4-1 loss in a friendly game in August 2002.
Egypt will be hoping to seal smooth passage to next year's Nations Cup edition in Cote d'Ivoire as they seek to make up for a heartbreaking shootout loss to Senegal in the final following a goalless draw in February.
The top two teams in each group will reach the tournament.
Egypt have recently appointed Ehab Galal as their new coach following the departure of veteran Portuguese boss Carlos Queiroz, who left by mutual consent after the team lost to Senegal on penalties again in a World Cup qualifying playoff.
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