The roster of teams for the semi-final stage of the Africa Cup of Nations is complete following Senegal’s 3-1 win over Equatorial Guniea Sunday night at the Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium, Yaounde.
Cheikhou Kouyate and Ismailia Sarr came off the bench to score what proved to be the decisive goals in the 68th and 79th minutes as the Teranga Lions roared into the semi-final in a convincing fashion.
With their star-studded team which includes the reigning CAF African Player of the Year, Sadio Mane, as well as FIFA Best goalkeeper Edouard Mendy, Senegal were the clear favourites for Sunday’s tie.
That said, Equatorial Guinea also had a point to prove having been one of the surprise packages of the tournament; beating Algeria in the group stage and they then got past Mali in an epic penalty shootout in the last round.
Senegal dominated the early proceedings against their opponents but they had to wait till the 28th minute before getting the breakthrough they craved for.
Sadio Mane slid a lovely pass through to Famara Diedhiou who in turn sent a great finish first-time past the goalkeeper and in at the near post.
Though there were pockets of chances for both sides afterwards, Senegal held on to their slim lead into the break.
In the second half, Equatorial Guinea fought hard for an equaliser and their efforts paid off in the 57th when Jannick Buyla fired them level.
The equaliser was a beauty to behold as Buyla made one touch to control, then a second to send it past Mendy into the far corner.
Senegal coach made a flurry of changes after his side was pegged back; bringing in Kouyate to replace Pape Gueye and Sarr was brought in earlier to take the place of Boulaye Dia.
The two players proved to be game-changers as they got on target in the 68th and 79th minutes respectively for Senegal to seal their place in the semi-final where they will face Burkina Faso.
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