CHAN TotalEnergies 2022: Algeria at the finish.
What a game ! Algeria qualified for the semi-finals of the TotalEnergies African Nations Championship, at the end of the suspense, against Côte d’Ivoire.
The meeting, rich in twists and turns, lived up to expectations, with all the ingredients of a quarter-final between two of the greatest powers in African football.
The action kicked off at a breakneck pace, with both teams battling it out for the lead, much to the delight of the crowd.
Midfield sensation Zakaria Draoui was unlucky not to give his side the lead in the 8th minute after a cross from Youcef Laouafi found him free from marking his head, unfortunately hit the pole.
In the process, the Ivorians should have taken the advantage when a golden opportunity presented itself to Aziz Abdoul, but his strike was not directed towards the goal.
The Algerians are again at the forefront of the attack. Intenable Laouafi, on the left side of the Fennecs, finds Aimen Mahious, whose well-placed header is acrobatically saved by Ayayi Folly in the 11th minute.
While the Greens seemed to have possession, Algerian goalkeeper Alexis Benoît Guendouz was sent off after mowing down Abdoul.
A few minutes later, the Elephants are reduced to 10 after the expulsion of Kouassi Attohoula for a dangerous foul on Laouafi, the two teams return from the locker room at 10.
On the restart, both teams continued their momentum.
The Fennecs have the first chance of the second set after Choahaib Keddad pressed well on the right to send a cross to Mahious whose header attempt was well directed but lacked power.
Minutes later, 19-year-old William Sankara nearly stunned the hosts with a shot from the edge of the danger zone, but his shot went over the bar.
Mahious remains a threat for the Ivorians and is again very close to taking the advantage in the 78th minute.
The Ivorians continue to press, even in front of a very noisy public, and have the misfortune not to take the advantage. Came into play Mohamed Zougrana almost released his own.
As both teams headed into extra time, Mahious was knocked down by Aziz Siahone. The referee consults the VAR then designates the penalty spot. Marions does herself justice and does not tremble. 1-0 for the Fennecs.
Algeria will face the winner between Niger and Ghana. The Fennecs will travel to Oran.