Algeria and Egypt have always been considered as one of the fiercest rivalries in world football. It is the same as Mighty Wanderers and Big Bullets football clubs here at home. During the build up to 2010 World Cup qualifications games, Egypt, the African Champions then, was denied qualification by a not so impressive Algeria. Egypt was bitter, very bitter. The developments leading to their crucial game culminated into violence, recriminations, diplomatic intrigue and a trail of broken glass and burned-out cars from Cairo to Marseille.
And when Malawi was put in the same group as Algeria in a 2010 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) edition in Angola, Egypt deliberately invited Malawi for a friendly game prior to the AFCON finals and it was reported that the Pharoahs tipped the Flames on how they would defeat their bitter enemy, Algeria.
The flames seemed to have gotten the lesson very well as they humiliated Egypt’s enemy, Algeria, by beating them three goals to nil. The Algerians seemed not to have forgotten this embarrassing defeat they suffered in the hands of the Flames as when they defeated Malawi at Kamuzu Stadium this month during the just ended AFCON Campaign for Equatorial Guinea next year, their IT gurus went overboard and hacked Malawi government’s official websites posting results of the game.
Fast forward to today, Malawians were hoping that the impressive Algeria would do a good job for them by beating Mali in Bamako so that a draw or a win for the flames in Ethiopia would guarantee them a place at Next year’s AFCON showdown.
Contrary to the expectations of many, Mali has surprisingly but convincingly whacked the Number one African, Algeria, by 2 goals to nil thereby sealing Mali’s qualification into the AFCON finals next year as they have finished with 9 points, second from Algeria.
Malawi in Ethiopia today put a gallant fight and managed to secure a goalless draw making it to finish third in their group with 7 points.
Did Ethiopia fixed the game to settle scores with their archrival, Egypt? One might be forced to accept this line of thinking had it not been for the Algeria’s hacking of Malawi Government’s website. It seems Algeria keeps grudges.