African Cup of Nations 2017

It’s good to see my predictions are still going to pot. This is why I stopped doing the lottery years ago. My ability to pick out winning numbers is shocking and I have seen no signs of improvement. To see just how bad my predictions were, let’s look at the two matches played last night.

The Ivory Coast took on Togo in match one of Group C which I’m sad to say, after my big build-up of goals and red cards it turned into the worst goalless draw you can imagine. Luckily for me I was watching the match cross eyed and missed most of it. For those confused why I did this, all was discussed in yesterday’s piece on AFCON. Which begs the question, can you afford not to read this every day? Ok you probably can but where’s the fun in that?

What is important is that 4 out of the 5 games have been drawn so far. I can see a trend here. Surely my prediction of a draw in the next game must be spot on. Which brings us seamlessly to match two.

After striking over unpaid bonuses, DR Congo decided to not only turn up but grab a win against Morocco. Quite how they managed this is beyond me. Having gone one up after Junior Kabananga scored, they then had Lomalisa Mutambala sent off after being booked twice in the final 10 minutes. It got worse for The Leopards as they then went down to a mere nine men as defender Gabriel Zakuani went off injured. Fortunately, he was able to return for the final six minutes of injury time, injury time he had almost created for himself to return. The man was a true hero as he hobbled around the pitch, almost dragging his bad leg along as it trailed behind him. Ok that last part didn’t happen but after two pretty dull matches I needed to add some excitement to the reports. After watching Zakuani push his body to the limit, imagine my excitement as I trailed though the squad list looking at who this brave soldier plays for. Thinking to myself how amazing this warrior would be playing for my team. Surely its one of the top teams in Europe? Lazio, Roma, maybe on the fringes of the Juventus team? Suddenly I found him, scrolled along his name and found his team. Oh yes readers he does indeed play for a European team. However, I don’t quite class Northampton Town as world class. That sound you can hear, that’s my disappointment hitting rock bottom.
But with the heroics of the Cobblers man, DR Congo managed to hold on to their 1 – 0 win. Oh the sheer jubilation, oh the joy. They are fast becoming my guilty pleasure.

So on to today and we see the first matches from Group D.

Avram Grant’s Ghana face Uganda in a game the Black Stars should win comfortably. How many times have I said that so far? Under funded Uganda are without doubt the whipping boys of the group, and Grant’s men will be hoping to score plenty. I for one have no doubt Ghana will score goals. There will be no one saying at the end of this match Avram’s Ghana couldn’t score in a brothel. As one thing is for sure, dear Avram has plenty of experience of scoring in one – FuFu massage parlour anyone? For those scrambling to look this up it’s next to Portsmouth’s training ground in Horton Heath…..apparently!

The second match of the day sees Mali against Egypt. Mali could struggle against Egypt and will have their work cut out. But one thing they have is their ability to kick lumps out of the opposition until they crumble which means Egypt will be in for a game. The Pharaohs do have a strong team, however, and will be hoping Arsenal’s Mohamed Elneny and in-form Mohammed Salah of AS Roma grab the points for them. This build up probably means this will end a draw, like oh so many games.

In AFCON news, footage of Wilfried Zaha doing his initiation dance for his fellow team mates, also better known as a “hazing ritual,” have been doing the rounds on social media. All this does is show me that not only is Wilfried a better footballer than me, but an even better dancer. What is totally clear to me is that we are quite different on the dance floor. He moves like Jagger, I move like my dad.

Crazy quote of the day has to come from Cameroon coach Hugo Broos who states there are no weak teams in AFCON 2017. This readers, this is called getting your excuses in early to avoid disappointment. It’s something I use with my wife on a regular basis. Oh my back , oh my leg , oh my groin, sorry love I don’t think ten minutes is possible but I’ll give it a go. Man I hate DIY!

It’s now that time of day where get ready for total humiliation with some other wayward predictions. But here goes!

Ghana are clearly going to hammer Uganda so on the safe side I’m going 2 – 0 to Ghana. Match two will see Mali receiving six yellow cards and one red, losing 2 – 1 to Egypt.

Now own up, how many of you cheated on the quiz this time? Come on tell the truth; one hand at the back , ok two. Hold on why is everyone’s hand up? Let me put those who didn’t know, or more probably just didn’t care, out of their misery. To answer ‘which single player has made the most appearances in AFCON tournaments?’ it is none other than Rigobert Song. He has played at a record eight tournaments. For those that like a stat he played in 1996, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2010. The man with more hairstyles changes than David Beckham and Posh Spice put together had quite the career.

After all the cheating, I’m giving you all an easy one today. Who is the overall top scorer of AFCON?

They say you learn something every day and by hell we are, you can’t beat a bit of AFCON trivia. As usual you know what to do tweet us your answer to @TalesFromTTF.

Enjoy and savour today’s games, I’m feeling stressed so off to find a nice relaxing massage; any recommendations? I’m in the Portsmouth area if that helps.

Until tomorrow people ‘Let’s all watch the AFCON, let’s all watch the AFCON’