Yusuf Abdulbasit Hozaifah reports,
CAF African Cup of Nation, AFCON 2021, was initially scheduled to be played in June/July 2021, but due to unfavourable climatic conditions that moment, the tournament was rescheduled to be played between 9 January and 6 February 2022- whilst retaining the name for sponsorship purposes.
Senegal made history as they won the Africa Cup of Nations for the first time with a dramatic 4-2 victory on penalties over Egypt in Yaounde on Sunday. Mane had earlier missed a penalty in the game but eventually stepped up to make history for the West African nation, and banish the memories of their 2019 failure when they lost the final to Algeria.
Egypt’s goalkeeper, took home the man of the match award, it came as Senegal had more possession, created the most chances and yet just couldn’t score. Egypt had a game plan, defended well to keep a clean sheet and take advantage of the few chances they created, but the penalty shootout finally decided the outcome after goalless 120 minutes in Cameroon on a night of fluctuating and extreme emotion for the Anfield’s duo.
For Mané, player of the tournament, there was the ecstasy of converting the winning penalty to end his country’s excruciating wait to be African champions. But, by contrast, Salah was left in tears after Egypt’s courageous efforts for an eighth title went unrewarded. Chelsea’s Edouard Mendy, goalkeeper of the tournament, secured a legendary status, his critical save from Mohanad Lasheen in the shoot-out allowed Mané to step forward and shoot his way into folklore.
The win for Senegal makes it seven different countries to win the AFCON, it also makes it their first time securing an AFCON victory. However, these two sides, Senegal and Egypt will meet again in March for thier World Cup qualifier tie.