(Reuters) – Four-time champions Ghana have been eradicated from the Africa Cup of Nations on Tuesday in a surprising upset, whereas Morocco and Senegal received their respective groups however with out backing up their standing as pre-tournament favourites.
Just two days after Equatorial Guinea shook up the event by beating defending champions Algeria, equally tiny Comoros humiliated Ghana with a 3-2 win of their Group C conflict in Garoua in one of many competitors’s largest surprises to date.
The small Indian Ocean island archipelago are making their Cup of Nations debut and registered not solely their first purpose of the event however their first win in a surprising end result.
They would possibly even sneak into final 16 as probably the greatest 4 third-placed finishers after condemning Ghana to final place however should anticipate the end result of the final group video games on Wednesday and Thursday.
El Fardou Ben Mohamed scored Comoros’ first ever purpose on the continental finals earlier than Ahmed Mogni added a second simply previous the hour-mark.
Ghana had captain Dede Ayew sent off early within the match, however objectives from Richmond Boakye and Alexander Djiku levelled the tie as they fought again, just for Comoros’ Mogni to seize a winner with 5 minutes remaining.
Morocco received the group after twice coming from behind to attract 2-2 in opposition to an underneath power Gabon, who had eight payers out with COVID-19 infections and captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang sent again to his membership in England for additional medical checks after the detection of post-virus cardiac lesions.
Gabon can be hoping he’s cleared to return for Sunday’s opening match of the spherical of 16 the place they’ll tackle Burkina Faso in Limbe.
Senegal completed top of Group B earlier on Tuesday, forward of Guinea, however it was after yet one more unconvincing efficiency regardless of the return from COVID-19 quarantine of captain Kalidou Koulibaly and goalkeeper Edouard Mendy.
They have been lucky to not concede a penalty in a 0-0 draw with unfancied Malawi on Tuesday and have nonetheless solely scored one purpose – a stoppage time penalty by Sadio Mane – after three video games.
Malawi have been left fuming when Cameroon referee Blaise Ngwa cancelled a late penalty he initially awarded them in Bafoussam, after Gomezgani Chirwa was introduced down within the field by defender Bouna Sarr.
The resolution was overturned on overview, however Senegal can regard themselves as lucky as there was each a pull of the shirt and get in touch with.
Malawi’s president Lazarus Chakwera had supplied every of those that performed in opposition to Senegal a fee of 1 million Kwacha ($1,223) if the staff superior to the second spherical, which they give the impression of being nearly sure to do regardless of ending third within the group.
Guinea got here second – on a head-to-head depend again in opposition to Malawi – regardless of shedding 2-1 to Zimbabwe, who had already been eradicated.
Naby Keita pulled one again for Guinea after Zimbabwe had led 2-0 at half-time In Yaounde however was booked late within the sport and can be suspended from their second spherical conflict subsequent week.
On Wednesday, Group D is concluded with Nigeria already having taken top place. They play Guinea Bissau in Garoua whereas Egypt can be in search of a a lot improved efficiency in opposition to Sudan to take second place.
(Editing by Hugh Lawson)