The second true heavyweight match of the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations comes our way as Nigeria takes on Egypt to begin Group D play.
After Monday's game between Morocco and Ghana saw the Atlas Lions come away with a 1-0 victory, today we're treated to another matchup of title contenders. The match kicks off at 11 a.m. ET from Roumde Adjia Stadium in Garoua, Cameroon.
Liverpool superstar Mohamed Salah leads the way for Egypt, but he has stiff star-powered competition on the other side as Nigeria boasts Leicester City duo Kelechi Iheanacho and Wilfred Ndidi.
While both teams are expected to progress from Group D no matter today's result, a potential winner would set themselves up nicely for a better Round of 16 matchup and a deep run deep in the tournament, while the loser could feel added pressure in its other group stage matches against Guinea-Bissau and Sudan.
Sporting News will be following the event live and providing score updates, commentary and highlights as they happen.
Nigeria vs. Egypt live score
(All times Eastern)
5th minute: First half-chance for Egypt falls to striker Mostafa from a very tight angle but it's easily saved by Nigeria goalkeeper Maduka Okoye, not truly troubling the Nigeria net. It came down the right flank with Trezeguet involved. Play is stopped for an injury to Egypt right-back Akram Tawfik, and it looks troubling. Seems to be a right knee problem.
3rd minute: Nigeria is pressing Egypt hard to open the match and it's causing the Pharoahs problems. We'll see how long Nigeria can keep it up, but it earns an early corner.
1st minute: We're under way! Egypt in its red kit with white shorts, while Nigeria in wearing dark green on dark green. it's a colorful affair in Cameroon.
10:55 a.m.: The teams are out on the pitch for the national anthem. This match has the feeling of a truly anticipated match.
10:30 a.m.: Will Nigeria and Egypt bring the big guns in their first match, or will they fall victim to rustiness and misfire like many of the other top sides in the tournament so far? Algeria the latest to look less than title-worthy earlier this morning as they were stymied by Sierra Leone goalkeeper Mohamed Kamara who made seven saves and faced 19 Algeria efforts.
None of the “big” sides have played anywhere near their best yet at #AFCON2021... Even Morocco who beat Ghana.
Lack of preparation time definitely a factor although tournaments often get off to slow starts.
10:27 a.m.: Salah isn't the only one in today's match ultimately targeting a trophy this month. Nigeria has its eye on the prize too. Both will look to prove it today.
10:08 a.m.: Mohamed Salah has just one target for AFCON 2022.
10:01 a.m.: Lineups are in, and most of the stars for both teams start, although Nigeria has left Ahmed Musa and Alex Iwobi on the bench. See the full lineups and substitutes below.
9:33 a.m.: Nigerian legend Ahmed Musa, who boasts 102 caps and 16 international goals, is set to begin his final Africa Cup of Nations tournament. He was a central figure in the team's AFCON 2013 tournament title and captained the side during the 2019 tournament when Nigeria reached the semifinals before losing to eventual champions Algeria.
9:25 a.m.: Egypt head coach Carlos Queiroz doesn't like to discuss specific formations, and prefers to remain flexible. We'll see how much fluiditiy there is today against Nigeria.
Nigeria vs. Egypt lineups
Several of Nigeria's stars play in the top leagues in Europe, which will make the Super Eagles a tough out for Egypt.
Expected to deploy a 3-CB formation as Augustine Eguavoen has done previously, he has reverted to a more traditional 4-4-2, with Iheanacho up front. Surprisingly, Everton's Alex Iwobi starts the match on the bench, as does Nigerian legend Ahmed Musa.
Nigeria starting lineup (4-4-2): Okoye - Aina, Omeruo, Ekong, Zaidu - Chukwueze, Ndidi, Aribo, Simon - Iheanacho, Awoniyi.
Nigeria subs (12): Onyekuru, Ejuke, Iwobi, Musa, Sadiq, Nwakali, Onyeka, Ebuehi, Ajayi, Ndah, Akepyi, Uzoho.
For Egypt, Premier League stars Mohamed Salah and Mohamed Elneny both get the start, as does Aston Villa playmaker Trezeguet. It's a strong lineup for Egypt, with the well-known players supporting Stuttgart youngster Omar Marmoush and Galatasaray striker Mostafa Mohamed up front.
While the lineup features many of Egypt's best players, there was significant rotation during recent CAF World Cup qualifying in the fall, meaning there could be signs of unfamiliarity on the pitch.
Egypt starting lineup (4-2-3-1): El-Shenawy - Fetouh, El-Wensh, Hegazi, Akram - Hamdi, Elneny - Salah, Trezeguet, Marmoush - Mostafa.
Egypt subs (12): Sherif, Ashour, Lasheen, Sobhi, El Said, Zizo, Kamal, Abdelmoneim, El-Din, Ashraf, Gad, Sobhi.
How to watch Nigeria vs. Egypt
- Date: Tuesday, Jan. 11
- Time: 11 a.m. ET
- TV Channel: beIN Sports
- Spanish Language: beIN Sports en Espanol
- Streaming: fuboTV (free trial for new users)
The match will be carried live on beIN Sports primary English- and Spanish-language channels in the USA and Canada.
Pre-match betting lines, picks & predictions
Pick: Draw & over 1.5 (+380)
Prediction: Nigeria 1-1 Egypt
- Moneyline: Nigeria +220 / Draw +185 / Egypt +165
- Spread: Egypt pick'em (-130) / Nigeria pick'em (+115)
- O/U 1.5 total goals: Over -145/ Under +125
- Both teams to score: Yes +125 / No -160