Egypt hoping CAF postpones AFCON 2021 final for 24 hours after marathon games

Egypt’s assistant coach Diaa El-Sayed asked the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to postpone the 2021 AFCON final game for 24 hours to ensure fair play between the finalists, as Senegal were handed one break day more than the Pharaohs.

Mahmoud Elassal , Friday 4 Feb 2022,
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Egypt assistant coach Diaa El-Sayed
Egypt assistant coach Diaa El-Sayed. Al-Ahram

The Pharaohs have been playing non-stop marathon games since the start of the round of the last 16 of the 2021 AFCON, playing all the way through extra time in their last three encounters to march on in the continental tournament.

“We are the only team in the tournament who played three games with extra-time, but the players’ ability helped Egypt claim victory in all games,” El-Sayed told the post game’s press conference against Cameroon late on Thursday.

Egypt defeated topflight Cote d’Ivoire 5-4 on penalties following a 0-0 draw in Japoma Stadium and then defeated Morocco 2-1 in the quarterfinal after extra-time to set up a semi-final crunch showdown with hosts Cameroon.

The Pharaohs defeated the Indomitable Lions 3-1 on penalties following another 0-0 draw in Yaounde after extra-time, booking themselves a spot in the AFCON’s final on Sunday against Senegal.

“I hope the CAF will revise the situation — since Senegal had an additional day for down time, as they played their semi-final on Wednesday — in order to ensure fair play for the two teams,” the assistant coach added.

“I hope the CAF will move forward the third-place decider game by one day, so it can be played on Sunday instead of Saturday, and to schedule the final game on Monday.”

Seven-time African Champions Egypt earned wide acclaim from international media, public figures, and famed sports newspapers after putting on a superb performance in the 2021 AFCON to reach the prestigious tournament’s final game.

“Egypt is always a big nominee to snatch the tournament title, as we are the most titled team, and I want to thank the team and the players after reaching the final despite the difficulties they suffered during the tournament,” El-Sayed said.

Egypt are edging closer to a record-extending eighth crown — their first since 2010 — but they have one last tough clash against Senegal, who are making a second successive appearance in AFCON’s final, on Sunday.

(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
Cameroon
2 1 0 7
Burkina Faso
1 1 1 4
Cape Verde
1 1 1 4
Ethiopia
0 1 2 1
Group B W D L P
Senegal
1 2 0 5
Guinea
1 1 1 4
Malawi
1 1 1 4
Zimbabwe
1 0 2 3
Group C W D L P
Morocco
2 1 0 7
Gabon
1 2 0 5
Comoros
1 0 2 3
Ghana
0 1 2 1
Group D W D L P
Nigeria
3 0 0 9
Egypt
2 0 1 6
Sudan
0 1 2 1
Guinea Bissau
0 1 2 1
Group E W D L P
Cote d Ivoire
2 1 0 7
Equatorial Guinea
2 0 1 6
Sierra Leone
0 2 1 2
Algeria
0 1 2 1
Group F W D L P
Mali
2 1 0 7
Gambia
2 1 0 7
Tunisia
1 0 2 3
Mauritania
0 0 3 0