By Anashe Murombedzi
THE curtain comes down on the AFCON tournament this Sunday evening with title aspirants Senegal facing seven-time champions, Egypt at the Olembe Stadium in Cameroon.
It will be a Liverpool affair as forwards Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah go head to head representing their countries, with Senegal seeking continental honours for the first time after narrowly missing out in 2002 and 2019.
The Lions of Teranga lost the 2002 final on penalties to Cameroon before losing 1-nil to Algeria in the 2019 final.
They are however hoping to get it right this time around, with their goal-scoring process in the knock out stages of this year’s tournament sending a signal that they might win the coveted title at last.
After just a single goal in Group B, Senegal went on to beat Cape Verde 2-nil in the round of 16, before downing Equatorial Guinea 3-1 in the quarter final.
Liverpool forward, Mane was then to show why he is regarded among the best in the world when he single-handedly dispatched Burkina Faso in the semi-final as his team won 3-1, with the Reds star forward claiming a goal and an assist.
However, Mane will face his equally impressive Liverpool teammate, Salah who has two goals and an assist.
Salah’s Egypt have shown tactical superiority on their way to the final after recovering from a one-nil loss to Nigeria in their opening match of the tournament.
Despite scoring just four goals in 630 minutes of football at the tournament, they have found a way to grind results knocking out the likes of Cote D’Ivoire, Morocco and hosts, Cameroon enroute to the final.
However, all their knock out matches went to extra time and won two of them against Cote D’Ivoire and Cameroon on penalties.
Ahead of tonight’s match, Egypt boosts of a superior head to head record against Senegal, having won six times in their last 12 games, while Senegal have four wins.
It is D-day and the big question is: Will it be Mane or Salah?