Egypt superstar Mohamed Salah believes that his side’s mentality needs to be at their best if they are to beat hosts Cameroon in the African Cup of Nations semi-finals. The Pharaohs beat Morocco in the quarter-finals with Salah scoring once and assisting the extra-time winner for a 2-1 win.
In a pulsating encounter, few expected Morocco to go down without a fight and that’s exactly what happened with the North African derby going according to plan. It saw both sides score once during normal time and struggle to find the winner which pushed the game into extra-time. That was where Egypt shone as Salah assisted the winning goal in the first half of extra time, with the Pharaohs holding on to seal their semi-finals berth.
They face hosts Cameroon and face a battle on their hand for their eighth AFCON trophy and also face them on the back of two back-to-back extra-time knockout games. But while Salah admitted that his side are fine physically, it’s mentally where they will need to fight and make sure that they’re at 100% to win the game. He also added that he expects a tough game against Cameroon but believes that the team and their coaching staff knows what to do.
“Physically, I’m fine, the players are fine, playing two games—240 minutes—in six days is fine, we're young, we’re healthy but we have to fight with our mind. I told the players after 90 minutes that they were brave, very brave, and we gave 100 percent to win the game. The players have given everything in each match,” Salah told GOAL.
“It’s now time to focus on Cameroon and we take it from there, hopefully we’ll now go on and win it. My expectation is that it’s going to be a tough game, that’s for sure, but our coach [Carlos Queiroz] has been working for 40 years, so we have lots of experience [on our side]. Us players are talking together, when we sit together, and we want the people back in Egypt to be happy.”