Preview: Egypt face Malawi to improve group ranking of AFCON 2023 qualifiers

Mahmoud Elassal , Friday 24 Mar 2023

Egypt seek to improve their ranking in Group D of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers when they host Malawi in the third round of the group stage at Air Defence Stadium on Friday.

File Photo: Egypt s forward Mohamed Salah (R) is fouled by Guinea-Bissau s defender Fali Cande during the Group D Africa Cup of Nations (CAN) 2021 football match between Guinea-Bissau and Egypt at Stade Roumde Adjia in Garoua on January 15, 2022. AFP


The Pharaohs are currently third in Group D with three points after beating Guinea 1-0 at home and losing against Ethiopia in Addis Ababa in the second round.

They will visit Malawi in the fourth round of the qualifiers on 28 March.

Under the helm of coach Rui Vitoria, Egypt have to make use of the home advantage to beat Malawi before heading to the fourth-round game away from home.

The 52-year-old Portuguese tactician revealed that he is determined to overcome any obstacles his team might face playing against Malawi, including the challenges posed by the hot weather and expected rainfall in the away clash.

“The two games are very important for us as we play only to win,” Vitoria told a press conference early this week. 

“The game against Malawi [in Lilongwe] will be played at 3pm during the month of Ramadan, but we will prepare ourselves to face all barriers including the hot weather and expected rainfall,” the Portuguese coach added.

Coach Vitoria called up all his big guns for the header games, including Liverpool winger Mohamed Salah and long absent Ahly forward Mahmoud 'Kahraba' Abdel-Moneim after his superb performance with the Reds in the previous games.

Vitoria also called three uncapped players: Hesham Salah, Marwan Atteya and Ahmed Abdel-Kader.

Moreover, the Egyptian Football Association (EFA) announced that some 20,000 supporters will be allowed to attend the anticipated game in Cairo.

"The EFA is calling on Egyptian football fans to attend the highly anticipated game and support the national team in achieving victory over Malawi," the EFA stated on Monday.

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