2012 Afcon: Co-hosts Equatorial go through, Senegal crash out

Co-hosts Equatorial Guinea became the first team to book a place in the quarterfinals of the Africa Cup of Nations after they beat one of the tournament’s favourites, Senegal 2-1 in Bata on Wednesday evening, for the Teranga Lions to crash out of the competition.

Right-back David Alvarez scored the winner in added-on time with a terrific long pile drive  to hand the Nzalang Nacional a famous and historical victory. Earlier, Senegal had fought hard to draw equal through substitute Moussa Sow on stoppage time after Iyanga Iban had powered the home team into the lead on 62 minutes.

The Teranga Lions, who boast of seasoned forwards like Sow, Pappis Demba Cisse, Mamadou Niang, Dame Ndoye amongst others failed to live up to their pre-tournament tag as favourites, rather becoming the first team to exit the competition.

However, it is one match the Senegalese will curse their stars after giving in everything, yet had nothing to show in return.

The West Africans were the dominant force and Issiar Dia who started on the right side of attack remained a threat to the Nzalang Nacional defence with his runs. Before half time, Cisse, Ba and Ndoye fluffed chances at goal.

Equatorial Guinea will teach them how to score in the score as Iyanga headed home from an Alvarez’s cross for the opener.

The Terang Lions fought on and pinned the hosts but had to wait till the 89th minute before Sow drew level from a goal mouth action. With the game certainly crushing for a draw, which will have kept the Senegalese in the hunt, Alvarez emerged from nowhere with a screamer that caught Senegal goalie Coundoul Bouna off guard.

The goal shattered the dreams of the Teranga Lions and for the host crowd, they partied all night long in response to their historic feat as debutants and co-hosts.

In the other Group A match earlier delayed for over an hour due to a downpour, Libya held Zambia to a 2-2 draw. Libya were up twice in the game but failed to hold onto the lead.

Libya’s captain Ahmed Osman scored on four minutes before Emmanuel Mayuka restored parity for Zambia on 28 minutes. Osman was again on target two minutes into the second half before Zambia’s captain Christopher Katongo salvaged a crucial point for the Chipolopolos on 57 minutes.

Source: GNA

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