The Africa Cup of Nations Group C promises an exciting clash between Guinea and Gambia at the Charles Konan Banny Stadium on Friday evening. Both teams are eager to secure a victory and advance to the knockout stages of the tournament.
Guinea has emerged as one of the most improved sides in Africa in recent years. They showcased their potential in their first match against Cameroon, where they held their opponents to a draw despite being considered underdogs.
The National Elephants displayed a commendable performance, dominating play and even taking the lead through Mohamed Bayo.
However, a needless tackle resulted in a red card for Francois Kamano, altering the game’s dynamics.
Nevertheless, Guinea’s coach, Kaba Diawara, was satisfied with the overall result and understands that a win in this match would likely secure their spot in the knockout round.
Gambia, on the other hand, faced a tough challenge in their opening match against Senegal. They were completely outplayed and suffered a 3-0 defeat.
Ebou Adams’ early red card added to their woes, making it an uphill battle against the defending champions.
The Scorpions will need to replicate their previous victory against Guinea in the 2022 edition of the tournament to have any hopes of progressing to the last 16.
However, based on their recent form and performance against Senegal, qualification for the knockout stages appears challenging for Tom Saintfiet’s side.
Guinea will be without the services of Kamano due to his suspension following a straight red card against Cameroon. Morgan Guilavogui is expected to replace him in the lineup.
Additionally, Naby Keita from Liverpool and talisman Serhou Guirassy are doubtful for this crucial encounter as they recover from injuries.
Gambia will miss the presence of Ebou Adams, who received a red card in their previous match. Hamza Barry is likely to fill the vacant midfield role alongside Ebrima Darboe.
Coach Tom Saintfiet may also consider making changes upfront after Ali Sowe’s underwhelming performance. Players like Alieu Fadera and Assan Ceesay could be given an opportunity to make an impact.
Conte, Diakhaby, Jeanvier, Sylla;
Guilavogui, Camara, Kante;
Janko, Gomez, Colley, Touray;
Manneh, Marr, Darboe;
Prediction: Guinea 2-0 Gambia
Despite their disappointment against Cameroon, Guinea displayed immense potential and were unlucky not to secure all three points.
Gambia, on the other hand, struggled against Senegal and their recent form raises concerns about their ability to compete at this level.
We expect Guinea’s National Elephants to deliver another impressive performance and secure their first win of the competition.