After some exciting, thrilling and intriguing football played at the ongoing AFCON 2019 tournament, it has finally come down to the final match – Senegal v Algeria!
It all started with the dramatic encounter between Senegal and Tunisia. In a match that was filled with debatable refereeing decisions, drama, and incidents, Senegal emerged the winners courtesy of an own goal by Tunisian defender Dylan Bronn.
For the large part, Sadio Mane was mostly unseen in the match. But much credit went to defender Kalidou Koulibaly who warded off Tunisia’s spirited efforts late in the match. And this came at a cost – Koulibaly will the final due to a booking he got for a harsh tackle.
Both sides missed precious opportunities in normal time as they failed to score the penalties awarded to them.
Senegal, who have never won an AFCON title are now a step closer to realizing this dream.
The Algeria vs Nigeria match was another exhilarating match to watch as Algeria conquered the Super Eagles 2-1 to progress to the final. Riyad Mahrez scored the final free kick of the match in a superb manner to send Algeria to the final.
Algeria had taken a lead through a deflection by Nigerian player William Troost-Ekong which resulted in an own goal. A second half penalty from Nigeria through Odion Ighalo leveled matters but it was left to Riyad Mahrez’s fantastic free-kick to end Algeria’s wait for an AFCON final since 1990.
Algeria’s run at this tournament has been fine in all honesty, as they have only conceded two goals, and have been on a scoring rampage. Their attack is always hungry for results, and they have been getting them.
This is the final that most fans would have wanted, as it brings to the fore the narratives of Senegal and Algeria. It promises to be an explosive encounter.