Egypt AFCON 2023 Preview and Predicted XI

Our Egypt AFCON 2023 preview gives you the lowdown on a widely-fancied team that will compete in the upcoming African Cup of Nations for the 27th time in its history, missing out on just eight competitions.

How did Egypt qualify for AFCON?

The Egyptians will be confident heading into this AFCON edition, as they sit 39th in the FIFA rankings and enter it as the sixth-best African side. Egypt made rather easy work of qualifying for AFCON 2023 by topping Group D ahead of teams such as Guinea, Malawi and Ethiopia.

To ensure they got the top spot they were forced to come from behind against Guinea and secure a 2-1 victory back on June 14, which was their fifth game of the group stages.

They ended up winning five games in Group D, losing just once, representing a very solid effort from Mohammed Salah and his teammates.

Egypt favourites to be AFCON 2023 Group B winners
(Xinhua/Ahmed Gomaa) – Photo by Icon sport

Egypt AFCON 2023 Preview

Who will Egypt play at AFCON 2023?

The Pharaohs have been drawn into Group B alongside Ghana, Cape Verde and Mozambique, making up a rather interesting and tough set of fixtures.

Ghana

It is likely to be between Ghana and Egypt as to who can top Group B come the new year, as they have some star-studded players within their ranks and are experienced when it comes to going all the way. The two sides have met on 23 separate occasions and it's Egypt who have more often than not come out on top, with 12 wins to Ghana's five.

Chris Hughton - Ghana manager
Chris Hughton has enjoyed a good start to life as Ghana manager – Photo by Icon sport

Cape Verde

Cape Verde are certainly starting to assert themselves as a serious and competitive nation in Africa as they prepare to appear in their fourth AFCON having made their debut back in 2013, but with limited top-class players plying their trade across Europe, they will be hoping for a slip up from either Egypt or Ghana to reach another quarter-final stage.

Mozambique

Mozambique will be a budding nation at this upcoming AFCON having not been on the world stage since 2010 and it was thanks to a second-half stoppage time strike to seal a nervy, yet crucial 3-2 victory against Benin. The Mambas will certainly be seen as the most unlikely side to advance out of Group B with their FIFA ranking of 114 being the biggest indicator of that.

Mozambique
Photo by Icon sport

How far will Egypt go?

Egypt will certainly fancy themselves in this group against three teams ranked below them in the FIFA standings, especially after having gone all the way to last year's final only to lose on penalties to Senegal, so we are expecting the Pharaohs to reach at least the semi-final this time around.

The Pharaohs have only lost once in their last 10 fixtures which have included friendlies and qualifying games so they are certainly in a great run of form led by Salah, who has 16 goal involvements for club side Liverpool so far this year.

Goalkeeper

After the world-famous Salah, Mohammed el Shenawy will undoubtedly be the first name on the teamsheet. He's only missed two of the last 14 games for Egypt, and has 51 caps to his name, so at least three more will undoubtedly be coming his way in a few weeks.

Defence

Egypt usually line up with a four-man defence to offer solidity at the back as well as options going forward, including right back Mohammed Hany, who has only ever played his football in Egypt, but is clearly trusted having racked up 14 appearances for his country.

At the heart of defence, it is likely to be the youngster Mohammed Abdelmonem, who's featured in eight of the last 12 games. He will be partnered by the veteran Ali Gabr, who started every game in Egypt's 2017 run to the AFCON final. On his left will be Ahmed Fatou, who just edges out Mohammed Hadi.

Midfield

The three midfielders will be crucial for Egypt to allow their attacking players to thrive and one undisputed name is Arsenal's Mohammed Elneny, who's been playing for the Pharaohs since 2012. The two on either side of him should be Hamdi Fathi, who does have a goal threat himself with three goals for his country, and Tarek Hamed who will provide that experience and defensive mindset.

Attack

Egypt's attack is where they are most dangerous and will cause problems for any defence at the African Cup of Nations. Through the middle, they'll have their target man and reliable centre forward, Mostafa Mohammed, and he'll be flanked on either side by Mahmoud Trezeguet and, of course, the Egyptian sensation Salah, who boasts 82 goal involvements in 92 appearances for his country.


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Aaron Hindhaugh

Aaron is a multi-skilled sports content writer and media professional. He is a specialist in both Men's and Women's football, along with golf.