Egypt in African Cup final

February 02, 2017
Egypt's goalkeeper Essam El Hadary.



Egypt's 44-year-old goalkeeper saved two spot-kicks in a penalty shootout win over Burkina Faso yesterday to lead his country into the African Cup of Nations final on their return to the tournament after a seven-year absence.

Essam el-Hadary, who is the oldest player to play at the African Cup, saved from opposite number Kouakou Koffi and then Bertrand Traore to give Egypt a dramatic 4-3 win in the shootout at Libreville's Stade de l'Amitie.

El-Hadary was part of the Egypt team that won three straight African Cups from 2006-10, but had to sit and watch the last three tournaments, with Egyptian football suffering as a result of the political upheaval back home.

Egypt, as the continent's most successful team, failed to qualify between 2012-15.

Now the record seven-time champions and the one-time kings of African football are back in the final.

The game ended 1-1 after 120 minutes, with Mohamed Salah's 66th minute goal for Egypt cancelled out by Aristide Bance for Burkina Faso seven minutes later.

Egypt will play the winners of today's second semi-final between Ghana and Cameroon.

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