Egypt showed their true face in the second half of an exciting 2-2 draw Nations Cup draw with Ghana on Thursday despite going behind twice, coach Rui Vitoria said.
With Mohammed Kudus firing Ghana ahead with a brilliant opener and Egypt losing Mohamed Salah to injury on the stroke of halftime, the omens looked bad for the disjointed Pharaohs.
However, they came out with all guns blazing in the second half, led by lively winger Omar Marmoush, to share honours with Ghana and keep alive their hopes of advancing to the last 16.
“The players, who have an excellent relationship with each other, had a halftime talk and then they showed their true face in the second half despite conceding,” Vitoria told beIN Sports after the game.
Eintracht Frankfurt winger Marmoush restored parity on 69 minutes after making the most of a poor back pass from Inaki Williams but Egypt’s celebrations were short-lived, with Kudus striking again two minutes later.
However, Mostafa Mohamed ensured Egypt shared the spoils with his second goal in as many games, a trademark poacher’s effort that leaves Ghana in precarious situation in the group.
Seven-time record winners Egypt, who also drew 2-2 with Mozambique in their opening Group B game, have two points from two games and face leaders Cape Verde (three points from one match) on Monday. Ghana lie at the bottom with a solitary point.
“The match (against Ghana) was exhausting; we need to have some rest. We have three days to prepare for the next game,” Portuguese boss Vitoria added.
“There are no easy games; we saw how Cape Verde beat Ghana. We have to focus on the next game.”