AFCON 2019: Algeria 2-1 Nigeria

Tanya Simon
July 15, 2019

Algeria beat Nigeria twice, including 1-0 in the final, to lift the trophy in Algiers in 1990 to follow on from the likes of Lakhdar Belloumi and Salah Assad, who helped put the country on the footballing map a few years earlier.

"The guys played an wonderful first half and we could have scored more goals".

Algeria have won the African title once, in 1980, and will be making their first appearance in the semi-final of the tournament since 2010. They are a risky team and we have to be cautious. "Algeria are so well organised, so compact, so "guardiolesque" in the way they recover the ball", said experienced global coach Claude Le Roy on television on Tuesday.

"I am very proud of the players and what they have done at this tournament, it's exceptional".

Tunisia drew four consecutive matches before taking advantage of jaded giantkillers Madagascar to win 3-0 with captain Youssef Msakni among the goals. While the team has defended well, the attack has been wasteful. "This refusal to accept defeat can take us a very long way", said coach Gernot Rohr. "Our spirits were high up, thank God for this win".

Meanwhile, a 4-3 penalty shoot-out also on Thursday secured Algeria's progression against tournament favourites Ivory Coast. We must make use of our opportunities to score and cut back on our mistakes.

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Sofiane Feghouli struck the opener for Algeria, 20 minutes into the game.

In the second half, Ivory Coast's Jonathan Kodja pushed the game into extra time with a shot into the left-hand corner.

Wilfried Bony had his penalty saved in the shootout by goalkeeper Rais Mbolhi to give Algeria the advantage.

According to the Algeria coach Djamel Belmadi, the right winger hasn't allowed that club success to go to his head.

"Penalties, you have to keep focusing until the end to win because if you lose concentration you miss a penalty, then you out you don't qualify".

"Now I see a solid Algeria side with a good balance between attack and defence".

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