The 2021 Africa Cup of Nations final match will be played on February 6, 2022 between Egypt and Senegal, as Liverpool teammates Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah clash with each other. Both players have been instrumental for Liverpool, winning the Premier League, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup together. Mane joined Liverpool in 2016 while Salah joined the following year and they have scored a combined total of over 250 goals ever since.
One of Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah Will Finally Lift Their First AFCON Trophy
From ‘Friends’ to ‘Foes’: Mane and Salah to Take on Each Other in the AFCON Final
Mane has featured in four different AFCON tournaments with Senegal while Salah has featured in three with Egypt. Senegal were knocked out in the group stage in 2015, knocked out by Cameroon in the quarter-final in 2017, lost to Algeria in the final in 2019 and will play against Egypt in the final in 2022. For Egypt, they lost to Cameroon in the final in 2017, were knocked out by South Africa in the round of 16 in 2019 and will face Senegal in the final in 2022.
Both teams had a quite disappointing start but managed to reach the final at last. Senegal struggled to defeat Zimbabwe 1-0 in their first group stage game, with Sadio Mane scoring a last-minute penalty, which was followed by goalless draws against Guinea and Malawi. Then in the round of 16, they defeated Cape Verde 2-0, defeated Equatorial Guinea 3-1 in the quarter-finals and defeated Burkina Faso 3-1 in the semi-finals. For Egypt, they lost their first game 1-0 to Nigeria and went on to win their next two games against Guinea Bissau and Sudan 1-0 each. They defeated Ivory Coast on penalties in the round of 16, defeated Morocco 2-1 in extra time in the quarter-finals and defeated Cameroon on penalties in the semi-finals.
Just like many greats like Didier Drogba, George Weah, Kanu Nwankwo and Samuel Kuffour who never won the AFCON until they retired, these two Liverpool stars have never been fortunate to lift the trophy despite previously playing in a final, but now one of them has the chance to finally win it. Who will it be- Sadio Mane or Mohamed Salah? Will Senegal lift their first AFCON trophy or will Egypt lift the trophy for the eighth time?
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