The last time Cameroon won this tournament was in 2002, when they sported one of football’s greatest kits: the sleeveless green
“Just a word on the referee Janny Sikazwe tonight,” says Harry Middleton, generously doing my job for me. “The CAF referee committee have assigned the final to Janny Sikazwe from Zambia. He has shown a big development in the last couple of years, in 2015 at his third AFCON he was appointed for the first time into the knockout round. If you do remember his name it is likely from his last final, of the FIFA Club World Cup in Japan. Overall he showed a good performance showing a modern but unobtrusive style, however he was memorable for reaching into his pocket but not cautioning for the second time Sergio Ramos.
“In this championship he has shown three okay performances, including a solid performance at the Quarterfinal between Cameroon – Senegal. Personally I would rather have seen Daniel Bennett referee tonight (he is the fourth official), but regional politics certainly helped Sikazwe, not to say he isn’t a good referee. He is now pretty much certain to go to the next World Cup in Russia. The assistants tonight are Jerson Dos Santos (Angola) and Aden Marwa Range (Kenya). As aforementioned Daniel Bennett (South Africa) will act as Fourth Official. Good luck to the team tonight!”
Egypt (4-2-3-1) El Hadary; Elmohamady, Hegazy, Gabr, Fathi; Hamed, Elneny; Warda, El Said, Trezeguet; M Salah.
Cameroon (4-3-3) Ondoa; Fai, Teikeu, Ngadeu, Oyongo; Siani, Djoum, Bassogog; Zoua, També, Moukandjo.
Updated at 6.14pm GMT
You never get a second chance to make a last impression. The final of a major tournament has a big impact on how history judges that tournament. That’s been a particular problem for the Africa Cup of Nations, whose recent finals have been so tedious as to make the World Cup equivalents feel like orgies of entertainment by comparison. The last eight Afcon finals have produced seven goals, four 0-0 draws and 471,941,865 unplanned naps from those watching on the sofa.
This tournament really needs a good final, because it has not been the best. At least not in terms of basic entertainment. It has produced some cracking stories, however – none better than Cameroon, whose inexperienced team have marched unexpectedly to the final.
So many players pulled out beforehand that you half expected Roger Milla to unhang his boots one last time at the age of 38. They were described the worst Cameroon team in a generation. And now, after beating the mighty Senegal and Ghana, they are in the final.
Egypt’s is a pretty good story too. They won three Afcons in a row from 2006-10, then failed to qualify for three in a row before this year’s tournament. They don’t really do half measures, do they?
Kick off is at 7pm.
Updated at 6.42pm
Rob will be here shortly. In the meantime, why not have a read of Sid Lowe’s interview with Egypt’s Héctor Cúper
if you can predict the exact time for goal scoring. you would be rewarded