Sunday’s African Cup of Nations final in Cameroon will center on two of the continent’s biggest stars of any era and the two Liverpool teammates when Salah’s Egypt tries to reclaim its lost glory against Mane’s Senegal, which is seeking a first title and the right to finally call itself the best in Africa.
The final will take place at the Olembe Stadium in Yaounde, where eight fans died after a crush outside Cameroon’s last-16 game against Comoros last Monday.
Senegal will be seeking its first African title after losing the last final in 2019 to Algeria. Senegal should be fresher after having an extra day’s rest and beating Burkina Faso inside 90 minutes on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Salah didn’t even get a chance to take a penalty for Egypt in a 3-1 shootout victory over Cameroon in the semifinals on Thursday after the hosts failed to score three times from the spot.
It was Clinton N’Jie’s miss wide that secured Egypt’s progress after the seven-time African champions scored their first three penalties.
Goalkeeper Mohamed Abou Gabal, who wears the name Gabaski on the back of his jersey, also made two saves for Egypt.
The tournament has been taking place in the middle of the European season, frustrating leading European clubs like Liverpool that have been without key players like Salah and Mane.