Defending champions Algeria, seven-time winners Egypt, and last edition’s runners-up Senegal, have played their first games of the current Africa Cup of Nations, failing to live up to expectations.
The surprising results of the top teams started from Senegal’s struggling one-nil win against Zimbabwe, through a Sadio Mane 97th minute penalty. The Zimbabweans proved to be tough for the Terranga Lions whose efforts were all futile, despite Mane’s presence. This was similar to the game that pitted Algeria against Sierra Leone.
The Leone Stars who lastly participated in the AFCON 26 years ago, did not give the Desert Foxes a chance to hit the back of their net, with goalkeeper Mohamed Kamara making terrific saves that maintained scores at 0-0 till full time. He ended up being Man of the match.
Egypt against Nigeria was a tough one on Tuesday. Though it was normal that any of the two sides win, the Pharoahs were expected to give Nigeria a hard time and at least score a goal with the likes of Mohammed Salah, but that was not the case. Iheanacho’s strike in the 30th minute happened to be the winner as the game ended 1-0.
Notwithstanding, Morocco managed a one-nil victory against Ghana.
Presently, everyone is waiting to see what the outcome of the Tunisia vs Mali match will look like. The two teams lock horns at 2:00 pm this Wednesday.