Host Cameroon lost 3-1 on penalties to Egypt on Thursday in the semi-final stage of the Africa Cup of Nations.
After 120 minutes of action with no goals to separate the two teams, the game went into penalty kicks and it was the North Africans that prevailed.
Leading by example, Vincent Aboubakar took the first kick for Cameroon and scored while Zizou did the same for Egypt.
Cameroon fans were left dumbfounded when Harold Moukoudi took the second kick for Cameroon and lost while Egypt scored theirs to take the lead.
The bad situation got worse for Cameroon when the Egypt goalkeeper Mohamed Abougabal saved the third kick taken by James Lea Silik while the Pharaohs socred to effectively win 3-1 and set up a final clash against Senegal’s Teranga Lions.
Focused on their mission to host and win, it was the Indomitable Lions who dominated the early proceedings in Thursday’s semi-final contest.
In the sixth minute, Cameroon’s Collins Fai had the chance to shoot his team in front but he whipped in a free-kick from the right that went straight into the hands of keeper Mohamed Abou-Gabal.
Three minutes later, Egypt responded with a decent chance of their own when Omar Marmoush laid off the ball to Salah on the edge of the area but the Liverpool man’s first-time shot went over the crossbar.
Another chance came the way of Cameroon in the 15th minute when Karl Toko Ekambi outpaced Egypt’s Ahmed Fattouh on the right-hand side of the area but his low cross was taken care of by the keeper Abougabal.
The breakthrough almost came for Cameroon in the 18th minute but defender Michael Ngadeu-Ngadjui was unlucky as his header only rattled the crossbar after connecting well to an expertly taken corner kick.
Ngadeu-Ngadju then fluffed his lines from another corner as he miscued his effort with the goal at his mercy.
The Indomitable Lions continued piling pressure on the Pharaohs but as hard as they tried, they could not find the breakthrough goal as the first half ended all square.
At the resumption of the second half, the Egypt coach made his first substitution; bringing in midfielder Mahmoud Trezeguet to replace Amr El-Sulaya.
The first real chance fell to Egypt but the North Africans failed to capitalise on the gaffe. A poor back pass was intercepted by Mohamed Salah and he broke clear but a bad first touch meant Onana was able to intercept.
The first booking of the game came just after the hour-mark when Egypt midfielder Elneny was booked for dissent. Cameroon’s Samuel Gouet also got a yellow card for a reckless foul on Trezeguet.
Egypt made their second substitution in the 63rd minute when Pyramids FC winger Ramadan Sobhi was brought in to replace Omar Marmoush.
As both teams continued to find a way to carve out a chance, Cameroon made their first substitution in the 80th minute when Samuel Gouet was pulled out for James Lea Siliki
While there was no goal in the dying stages of the second half, there was late drama as Egypt suffered a blow when their coach, Carlos Queiroz, was sent off for dissent by referee Gassama for protesting the decisions taken by the referee.
With the second half also failing to provide any goal, the game went into extra time and thereafter penalties as both teams remained inseparable.
In the end, it was Mohamed Salah’s Egypt who prevailed and they will face Sadio Mane‘s Senegal in Sunday’s final- a battle between two Liverpool team mates.
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