Connect with us

Sports Blast

Afcon 2021: Mo Salah to face Sadio Mane in finals after Egypt brushed aside Cameroon on penaties

Published

on

Share

Cameroon 0-0 Egypt (1-3 penalties): The Pharaohs triumphed in a shootout once again to reach the AFCON final, where they will face Senegal

Mohamed Salah will go up against his Liverpool team-mate Sadio Mane in the final of the Africa Cup of Nations after Egypt overcame the challenge posed by Cameroon in their last-four clash on Thursday evening.

The Pharaohs will face Senegal for the coveted trophy on Sunday in a match that will see two of the Premier League’s best wingers go head-to-head for continental glory.

Mane booked his place in the final by chipping in with a goal and an assist as Senegal beat Burkina Faso in their semi-final clash on Wednesday.

It remains to be seen whether he will come out on top against Salah and Egypt, who needed extra time and penalties to snatch a remarkable victory against the tournament hosts in Yaounde.

Salah struggled to get into the game throughout the first half as Cameroon stamped their authority on the contest from the first whistle.

The hosts started well and began to ask questions of Egypt’s defence in the early stages of the match, with the Indomitable Lions feeding off the raucous atmosphere created by home crowd

They went close after just 17 minutes when Vincent Aboubakar struck the woodwork with a headed effort from close range.

Michael Ngadeu and Toko Ekambi missed further chances to hand their side an early lead just moments later, with Cameroon unable to break the deadlock before the interval.

Egypt were forced into mounting their attacks on the break in order to stand any chance of shifting the momentum in their favour as the second half progressed.

However, they often found themselves unable to stay on the ball for long enough, leaving Salah isolated in his role as the Egypt’s main attacking outlet.

The Liverpool ace registered his first shot on target shortly before the hour mark but was unable to cause any problems for Andre Onana between the sticks with a trickled effort from the edge of the area.

He was later denied once again by the Cameroon stopper as he bore down on goal after he was gifted possession on the edge of the area.

Tempers flared in the closing stages of regular time as Egypt manager Carlos Queiroz received a second yellow for bellowing at the officials over an alleged punch on Ramadan Sobhi and was sent off from the technical area, where he was soon joined by his assistant.

Queiroz was far more animated than many of the players on the pitch during the closing seconds, with both sides short of intent and movement as an energy-sapping 90 minutes ended all square.

Clear-cut chances remained few and far between during the 30 minutes added on but Egypt had a fantastic chance to win it at the death only for Sobhi’s driven cross to miss all the white shirts waiting in the area.

The match went to penalties and the Pharaohs built on their experience from earlier in the tournament when they beat Ivory Coast via a shootout to progress.

The Indomitable Lions Cameroon were the architect of their own downfall from 12 yards and Njie’s blase effort which missed by a huge distance summed up their dismal performance from the spot.

The hosts will have the chance to restore some pride in the third-place play-off game against Burkina Faso on Sunday, before Egypt take on Senegal in the all-important final.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Sports Blast

Osimhen netted for as Nigeria routs Sao Tome 10-0

Published

on

Share

Victor Osimhen scored four goals as Nigeria routs Sao Tome and Principe 10-0 in African Nation’s Cup qualifying

The Super Eagles missed out on a place at the 2022 World Cup in Africa’s play-offs in March but have made a perfect start in Group A as they seek a spot at next year’s Nations Cup in Ivory Coast.

The victory away from home is the biggest win the Super Eagles have recorded, surpassing a 10-1 triumph over Benin in 1959.

Watford striker Emmanuel Dennis and Ademola Lookman, who spent last season on loan at Leicester City, were also on the score sheet for Jose Peseiro’s Nigeria.

Osimhen, 23, now has 15 goals in 22 international caps, with the Napoli striker becoming only the second Nigerian to score four goals in an international, with Rashidi Yekini the first to do so in a 7-1 Nations Cup qualifier against Burkina Faso in 1991.

Sao Tome and Principe are ranked 183 in the world by Fifa and had to come through a preliminary qualifying tie against Mauritius to reach the group stage.

The islanders were then thrown out of qualifying for fielding an ineligible player – but Sao Tome were subsequently reinstated just nine days before Group A got under way following a successful appeal.

Nigeria join holders Senegal, Algeria, Burkina Faso, Mali and Morocco with two wins from their first two qualifiers, with the next two rounds of matches scheduled for September.

Continue Reading

Sports Blast

Afcon qualifier: Nigeria came from behind to best Sierra Leone 2-1

Published

on

Share

Nigeria came from a goal down to defeat Sierra Leone 2-1 in their opening 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier, on Thursday at the Moshood Abiola Stadium, Abuja.

Alex Iwobi and Victor Osimhen struck in the wake of Jonathan Morsay’s early opener for the Leone Stars, sending the hosts level at the top of Group A with Guinea-Bissau who won their match against Sao Tome & Principe.

A choppy playing surface offered challenges for both teams, though Sierra Leone seemed to adapt more quickly, as attacker Mohamed Buya Turay fired a first shot in the third minute, but was tipped over the crossbar by Nigerian goalkeeper Francis Uzoho.

The Super Eagles then had a couple of chances through Victor Osimhen, and it seemed they would soon seize control of the match, but they were stunned when the Leone Stars claimed the lead in the 11th minute.

Musa Kamara sent in a cross from the left flank to pick out the run of Jonathan Morsay, who threw himself at the ball and scored with a diving header to put the visitors 1-0 up.

It was almost 2-0 just a few minutes later, as Sierra Leone cut through Nigeria’s defence on a counter attack and Musa Kamara struck a low shot which was tipped onto the post by Uzoho.

Nigeria then went straight up the other end and equalised to make it 1-1 on 16 minutes: Moses Simon played a well-weighted pass to put Alex Iwobi into space on the edge of the box and the Everton man opened up his body and whipped a shot into the bottom corner of the net.

The teams went on to trade half-chances before Nigeria claimed the lead for the first time in the 41st minute: Ola Aina’s cross from the right picked out Simon, who registered a second assist with a downward header across the six-yard box which was buried by Osimhen to make it 2-1.

The Super Eagles may have enjoyed the lead at half time, but the start of the second stanza saw them opt for a tactical change, as forward Sadiq Umar made way for central midfielder Peter Etebo.

The home side blew a great chance to add to their advantage when Samuel Chukwueze shot wide from a glaring opportunity in the 54th minute, and shortly thereafter Sierra Leone almost levelled the game when substitute Amadou Bakayoko beat Uzoho to a ball into the box, but sent the ball wide of the target.

Nigeria had half chances to kill off the game in the final quarter, but of more note were injuries suffered by captain William Troost-Ekong (groin) and striker Osimhen (hamstring), who were replaced by Kenneth Omeruo and Terem Moffi in the dying minutes.

The teams will return to Group A action on Monday 13 June, with Nigeria away to Sao Tome & Principe, while Sierra Leone will host Guinea-Bissau.

Continue Reading

Sports Blast

Real Madrid crowned champions of Europe

Published

on

Share

Liverpool were denied a seventh European crown as Real Madrid became the chapions of the continent once again thanks to Vinicius Junior’s strike in a Champions League final marred by chaos outside the Stade de France.

Paris stepped in as host after UEFA stripped St Petersburg of the showpiece following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but it did not provide a fitting host as European royalty went toe-to-toe in the biggest club match of the season.

Kick-off had to be delayed by 36 minutes due to substantial security issues outside the Stade de France, where Liverpool where edged out 1-0 in a tense, engaging final settled by Real star Vinicius Jr.

Jurgen Klopp’s Reds were unable to find a response to the second-half strike as Carlo Ancelotti, managing a record fifth Champions League final just a year after leaving Everton, oversaw the Spanish giants’ 14th European Cup triumph.

It was a heartbreaking end to a memorable season for Liverpool, who won the Carabao Cup and FA Cup before being pipped to the Premier League title by a point and losing in the French capital.

Liverpool had settled quickest in Paris, where Thibaut Courtois denied Mohamed Salah – a man in search of revenge following his injury in the 2018 defeat to Real – before tipping a Sadio Mane strike onto the post

Karim Benzema, this season’s Champions League top scorer, saw a goal ruled out for offside just before half-time and the LaLiga champions caught Liverpool napping in the 59th minute, landing a match-winning blow.

Vinicius Jr snuck behind Trent Alexander-Arnold to turn home Federico Valverde’s low cross and Courtois produced one of the best performances of his life to keep Liverpool at bay.

Salah led the charge for an equaliser that never arrived on a night that will be remembered by many for the farce outside the Stade de France, which led Liverpool to request a formal investigation midway through the final.

Continue Reading