Senegal win drama-filled match to reach Afcon showpiece

Senegal win drama-filled match to reach Afcon showpiece
Cheikhou Kouyate of Senegal runs to celebrate after his team takes the lead in extra time during the Africa Cup of Nations 2019 Finals semifinal game between Senegal and Tunisia at 30 June Stadium in Cairo, Egypt on 14 July 2019 © Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

by Staff Reporter

Sunday Jul 14, 2019. 21:15

Senegal will face either Algeria or Nigeria in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations final, following a 1-0 extra-time win over Tunisia at 30 June Stadium in Cairo on Sunday evening.

The Lions of Teranga were the dominant side in the opening half, but were upstaged by their opponents in a drama-filled second that included two missed penalties.

The most notable chance of the first half fell to Youssouf Sabaly, but having beaten Mouez Hassen with a curling effort, the fullback was desperately unlucky to watch his attempt canon off the woodwork and out of danger.

Tunisia looked a different side following the interval and after Yassine Khenissi squandered two gilt-edged chances, the Eagles of Carthage were awarded a contentious penalty after the a ball cannoned into Kalidou Koulibaly's left arm in the 75th minute.

Ferjani Sassi duly stepped up to the spot, but his tame effort was easily saved by Alfred Gomis who continued to impress in goal for the Senegalese.

Senegal were awarded a penalty of their own six minutes later, but Hassen showcased his penalty-saving credentials with a superb save to keep out Henri Saivet's rasping effort from 12 yards out.

With no goal forthcoming in regulation time, the game headed for an additional half-hour and in the 101st of the game, the deadlock would finally be broke, albeit through fortuitous circumstances.

Hero turned villain as Hassen's scuffed punch cannoned off the unexpected Dylan Bronn and into the back of the Tunisian net.

The Eagles of Carthage then had a penalty decision overturned by VAR following further inspection by the referee in what was fast turning into an incredible encounter. Senegal, though, would ultimately do enough to edge into only a second Afcon final.

Senegal (0) 1 (101' Bronn og.)

Tunisia (0) 0

Senegal: Gomis; Gassama (Wague 110'), Sabaly, Koulibaly, Kouyate, Gueye, Saivet, Ndiaye (Sane 82'), Diatta (Sarr 68'), Mane, Niang (Diagne 63').

Tunisia: Hassen; Bronn, Mariah, Hadadi, Msakni (Sliti 46'), Khazri, Khenissi (Chaouat 117'), Sassi (Badri 106'), Drager, Skhiri, Ben Mohamed (Chaalali 82').

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