Angola look to build on positive start

Angola look to build on positive start
Djalma Campos of Angola celebrates a goal with teammates during the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations Finals football match between Tunisia and Angola at Suez Army Stadium, Suez, Egypt on 24 June 2019 ©Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

by Staff Reporter

Wednesday Jun 26, 2019. 13:00

Angola will look to build on their positive start to the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations when they face Group E rivals Mauritania at the Suez Stadium on Saturday 29 June, kick-off at 16:30 CAT.

Angola opened their AFCON with a very promising 1-1 draw against Tunisia on Monday night. The southern Africans were outplayed for most of the first half and found themselves behind to Youssef Msakni’s 34th-minute penalty, but in the second stanza they upped their game and claimed an equaliser through Djalma Campos.

Coach Srdjan Vasiljevic showed his tactical acumen with some intelligent substitutions – the Palancas Negras bossed the game after the introduction of players like Geraldo and Gelson, and both may be in line for a starting place come Saturday.

Mauritania’s first AFCON finals match was one they will want to forget, as they suffered a heavy 4-1 defeat at the hands of Mali on Monday night. Abdoulay Diaby, Moussa Marega, Adama Traore II and Adama Traore I all netted for the Eagles, while Al Murabitun’s consolation goal was a penalty scored by Moctar Sidi El Hacen.

It was a steep learning curve for coach Corentin Martins and his team, but at least they have gotten what could well be the toughest game of Group E out of the way, and they can now focus on trying to secure positive results against Angola and Tunisia in an effort to reach the knockout rounds.

In head-to-head stats, Angola and Mauritania have met in just two previous matches. Both were in the qualification campaign for this AFCON and took place back-to-back in October last year: the Palancas Negras won 4-1 in the first game in Luanda (with Mateus scoring twice), while the return game in Nouakchott saw Al Murabitun claim revenge with a 1-0 triumph (Adama Ba netted the only goal).

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