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Egypt 3-1 Belarus: Salah, Mohsen & Aboutrika help The Pharaohs into quarter-finals
After a disappointing performance against New Zealand in their second game, the African side struck three times in the second half to claim a last-eight spot
By Matthew Harold at Hampden Park
Hany Ramzy made two changes to his side after the Pharaohs' draw with New Zealand, Saad Samir and Shehad Ahmed replacing Mahmoud Alaa Eldin and Saleh Gomaa, while Belarus remained unchanged from the XI that lost to Brazil.
The Egyptians, knowing that they needed a win to send them through to the quarter finals started the brighter, with new Basel forward Salah finding Emad Meteab, but unfortunately for the striker he was flagged offside.
Goalkeeper Aleksandr Gutor was the busier of the two stoppers, as he went down sharpish to save from Ahmed Fathi, after the former Sheffield United player cut inside from the right wing and unleashed a strike that was heading towards the bottom corner before the keeper saved.
Egypt then started to pepper the Belarus goal, with Hossam Hassan trying his luck from long range, before Meteab had a header from just inside the box well saved by Gutor to keep the scores level.
Salah then had the best chance of the half as he got in behind Denis Polyakov, but he somehow managed to put the ball high and wide of Gutor’s goal when it seemed easier for the winger to score.
Just before the half-time whistle Belarus could have took a shock lead into the dressing room at the break, as Igor Kuzmenok got his head onto a corner from the left by Renan Bardini Bressan, but he couldn’t direct the chance on target.
The Belorussians started the second half better than they did the first and nearly claimed an opener as Stanislav Dragun raced in from the halfway line, bearing down on goal, but before the midfielder could get his shot away, Saadeldin Saad blocked the attempt away from danger.
Egypt should have gone ahead moments later as half-time substitute Mohsen broke The Red Devils offside trap, but the Petrojet striker wasted the opportunity and had to settle for a corner.
The game then swung to the other end, were Kornilenko managed to get a hold of the ball after Egypt failed to clear a free kick from the left wing, Eslam Ramadan put his body on the line to clear the ball.
Then, with ten minutes gone in the second half, Egypt opened the scoring, as Salah got in behind the Belarus defence and managed to stroke the ball beyond the outstretched arms of Gutor to put The Pharaohs not only into the lead in the game, but also in the group.
That goal meant that Belarus had to push forward and they nearly equalised ten minutes later, as Ilya Aleksievich unleashed a strike from the edge of the area, which Ahmed El Shenawi got down well to palm away, with Kornilenko offside for the rebound.
Georgy Kondratyev’s side started to push further forward than they had for the previous hour of the game and started to create real chances, with Dragun going close with a header after a cross from the right from Bressan.
With just over a quarter of an hour left in the game, Egypt doubled their advantage as skipper Aboutrika found Ramadan racing down the left wing and he passed the ball into the box, for Mohsen to stroke the ball into the net.
Minutes later two became three as substitute Omar Gaber crossed from the right hand side of the penalty area for Aboutrika to get his name of the scoresheet and Egypt to secure their place in the last eight of the tournament.
With the game dying out Belarus managed to grab a goal back as substitute Andrei Voronkov got his head to a Dmitry Baga corner to reduce the deficit, but it wasn’t to be enough as they went out at the group stage.
- Own Goal
- Penalty Missed
- Yellow Card
- Penalty Save
- Penalty Shootout Goal
- Penalty Shootout Miss
- Yellow Card / Red Card
- Red Card
- Substitution IN
- Substitution OUT
- Goal.com Rating
- Goal.com Man of the Match
- Goal.com Flop of the Match
- Top & Flop Global Ranking
- Fans' Man of the Match
- Fans' Flop of the Match