Thursday Jan 13, 2022. 15:00
Algerian defender Ramy Bensebaini has blamed the weather and pitch for the defending AFCON champions draw in Tuesday’s opening Group E fixture against Sierra Leone.
The AFCON champions were held to a 0-0 draw in a game that saw Sierra Leone goalkeeper Mohammed Kamara made some outstanding stops to earn the man-of-the-match award.
“We would have liked to have started the competition with a victory. The match was difficult against a Sierra Leonean team who defended well. Their goalkeeper also had a good game. We suffered climate change with high humidity, the state of the land did not help us,” Bensebaini told DZFoot.
“I’m not making excuses, but this is the reality. We weren’t killers in front of goal. We played with too much haste.”
The AFCON champions have an opportunity to redeem themselves on January 16 when they face bottom of the log Equatorial Guinea.
It is a match Algeria must win before their big Group E finale on January 20 against 2015 winners Cote d’Ivoire who lead on 3 points after beating Equatorial Guinea 1-0 on Wednesday night.
“This is only the first game. This is a bad result. Now we need to recover well and focus on our next game and we need to come back strong in this tournament,” Bensebaini said.