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AFCON 2012: Equatorial Guinea Through to Last 8 After Thumping Senegal Out
26/01/2012 10:12:00
Equatorial Guinea's David Alvarez Aguirre celebrates after scoring against Senegal

Equatorial Guinea 2-1 Senegal
(Travieso 62', Aguire 94') (Sow 89')

By Cliff Peters

In a most surprising result and a dramatic finish, David Kily's stunning stoppage-time strike sent co-hosts Equatorial Guinea, the smallest nation ever to host the competition, into the quarter-finals of the African Nations Cup with a 2-1 win, to leave Senegal facing up to the ignominy of elimination from Group A after just two games.

It was one of its biggest shocks, particularly for Senegal, one of the favourites for the title, to be dumped out of the competition in Bata by a team ranked 151st in the world.

Kily saw to that as he struck a long-range effort deep into time added on after Moussa Sow's 89th-minute strike for Senegal had cancelled out Randy's opener after 62 minutes.

The winning goal sparked emotional scenes at the final whistle, with the result far beyond the expectations of the players or their fans at the Estadio de Bata.

Having missed a host of first-half chances, Senegal saw Iban Iyanga Randy put the co-hosts ahead on 62 minutes. However, Moussa Sow hit a dramatic 89th-minute equaliser that looked to have rescued Senegalís tournament and stunned the home crowd into silence.

Not to be denied, Equatorial Guinea struck again deep into injury time as David Kily booked their quarter-final place and sparked wild celebrations with a blistering strike from 25 metres that tore into Senegalís net, dumping them out of the tournament in the process.

There was still time for more drama as the home side then had centre-back Laurence Doe sent off.

Despite a miserable recent history at this tournament, Senegal came into this year's edition as one of the favourites for the title, but a second defeat in as many games has delivered a terminal blow to their chances, with Amara Traore's men now unable to qualify from Group A in their final game.

The game was played on a severely waterlogged pitch, coming after Libya and Zambia were made to work hard to take a point apiece from a similarly rain-affected encounter.

The weather forced the kick off the early to be pushed back by 75 minutes, and the same delay was applied to the evening's late kick off, when conditions were much drier but still problematic enough to prevent a free-flowing encounter.

The conditions no doubt played a part in a forgettable opening 45 minutes that produced little in the way of presentable chances, but the game opened up after the break, with Guinea's Thierry Fidjeu and Senegal's Papiss Cisse trading shots in the minute after the restart.

Narcisse Ekanga headed over for the co-hosts on 58 minutes as the game continued to open up, and the first goal duly arrived after 62 minutes.

Kily was the architect, his precise cross from the right met by Randy with a firm header from close in. Then Mamadou Niang and Sow went close to pulling Senegal level inside the final 15 minutes, but they had to wait until the 89th minute to get back on level terms, Niang teeing up Sow, who fired home emphatically from close range to seemingly keep Senegal's hopes in the tournament alive.

But there was more drama in store, and it arrived four minutes into stoppage time when Javier Balboa picked out Kily from the left channel, and the defender's unstoppable drive from 25 metres sent his side through to the last eight in the most dramatic of circumstances.

There was still time for Doe to see red for Guinea late on, but even that could not dampen the scenes of jubilation both on the pitch and in the stands.

The result puts Equatorial top of the group on six points, followed by Zambia on four, and Libya on one. Libya, who lost their opening tie against Equatorial Guinea could still make it, but the possibilities are against them as they face Senegal in the last group game on Sunday.

If Libya win they would still need to wait for the outcome of the co-hosts' tie with Zambia who need only one more point to make sure of qualification.

Thursday is set for two more matches from Group B with firm favourites Ivory Coast facing Burkina Faso. Victory would push them through to the last eight. So too Angola if they manage to beat Sudan. Ivory Coast and Angola won their first outings. Burkina Faso and Sudan are in search of their first points.
football is played on de pitch,not on media papers.senegalese players won de tournament before it started,infact al de remaining powerhouses underestimate de smaller teams.nxt AFCON wil consist of smaller nations.

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