Egypt will face South Africa in last 16 tie of the Africa Cup of Nations at Cairo International Stadium tonight.
Both countries are desperate to win the trophy for different reasons. Egypt are desperate to win the trophy on home soil, after losing the 2017 final to Cameroon in Gabon.

The Pharaohs are Africa’s most successful nation, they have won the trophy seven times.
South Africa Bafana Bafana who qualified for the knockout stage by a whisker, are desperate to add another continental title to the only one they won in 1996.

The Bafana Bafana are unbeaten in the previous three meetings with Egypt, did not concede a single goal in those matches.
This is a record coach Stuart Baxter can build on as he attempts to upset the home team in front of 75,000 fans. But Baxter knows his team has to be at their best against Pharaohs yet to concede a goal in 270 minutes of play.

“Playing in front of such passionate crowd sometimes works in your favour,” Baxter said.
However Baxter’s dream of upsetting the hosts must find a solution to putting the ball in the back of the net and defend better. It is expected Bafana Bafana will start both Thulani Serero and Percy Tau in attack.

Trezeuget, Salah factor
Like their attack which looks poor, the defence for Bafana Bafana is equally suspect and have to be at their best to stop Pharaoh Duo of Mahmoud Ahmed Trézéguet and Mohamad Salah who have scored three goals out five the Egyptians scored in the group stage.
Pharaoh’s Mexican coach Javier Aguirre admits his team has not played to their limit but is happy with the defence and keeper Mohamed El-Shenawy who has been in excellent form. The winner will play Nigeria or defending champions Cameroon.

Head-to-Head
Egypt 4 wins
Drawn 1
South Africa 6 wins

The matches
4 Nov 1995 S. Africa v Egypt 2-0 Simba Cup
24 Jan 1996 S. Africa v Egypt 0-1 Afcon
28 Feb 1998 S. Africa v Egypt 0-2 Afcon
16 Dec 1998 S. Africa v Egypt 2-1 Friendly
10 Nov 2001 S. Africa v Egypt 1-0 Friendly
15 Nov 2003 Egypt v S.Africa 2-1 Friendly
14 Jan 2006 Egypt v S. Africa 1-2 Friendly
15 Nov 2006 Egypt v S. Africa 1-0 Mandela Cup
26 Mar 2011 S. Africa v Egypt 1-0 Afcon
05 Jun 2011 Egypt v S. Africa 0-0 Afcon
06 Sep 2016 S.Africa v Egypt 1-0 Friendly

fmusisi@ug.nationmedia.com