Egypt maintain form to end Austrian hopes
© Getty Images

A Mohamed Ibrahim hat-trick saw Egypt storm into the Round of 16 in emphatic fashion with a one-sided 4-0 victory against Austria.

The win was not enough to lift Egypt past group winners Brazil on goal difference with both teams locked on seven points, but the South Americans holding a two-goal advantage.

Hot and humid conditions greeted the teams as they took the field in Cartagena, but the two teams nevertheless turned on plenty of entertainment for the good-sized crowd in attendance.

The first opening fell the way of the Austrians just three minutes into the contest with Ahmed Sobhi forced to clear off his own line, following a Christian Klem free-kick from a wide area. Soon after Austria, desperate for all three points, again came close to taking the lead but Robert Zulj narrowly failed to push the loose ball home.

The Egyptians, who impressed greatly in their opening two matches, soon came back into the contest and Mohamed Salah put the ball into the danger area only for goalkeeper Samuel Radlinger to pull off an important stop.

The match soon developed into an end-to-end contest with good chances at both ends.

It was Egypt however that claimed the all-important first goal with Mohamed Ghazi’s shot from 20 metres taking a wicked deflection to leave Radlinger with no chance.

Egypt were seemingly buoyed by the goal and a quality Salah free-kick curved wide of the goal. Nice combination play between Salah and Ahmed Hassan resulted in the latter denied only by the exposed Radlinger.

Austria went into the half-time interval anguished by an Andreas Weimann effort from 20 metres, which missed the target by only a few millimetres.

Upon the restart the Europeans again had a good chance to equalise, but this time goalkeeper Ahmed Elshenawi produced a fine stop to deny Robert Gucher, who had fired in a smart effort on the turn.

The contest was all bit over by the hour mark as the Africans doubled their advantage. Ibrahim fired in from 17 metres and the hitherto impressive Radlinger allowed the ball to slip through his fingers.

Ibrahim was at it again just two minutes later pushing home from close range after Radlinger could only parry Mohamed El Neny’s shot into his path.

Ibrahim rounded out the scoring and his hat-trick eight minutes from the end. The Egyptian No14 once again the man on the spot to prod home after the unlucky Radlinger made a great stop from a Hussein Syed header.