Ghana players celebrate after seeing off Nigeria at the MKO Abiola stadium in Abuja on Tuesday night to book their ticket to the 2022 Worl...
|Ghana players celebrate after seeing off Nigeria at the MKO Abiola stadium in Abuja on Tuesday night to book their ticket to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. (Photo credit: CAFonline)|
The Super Eagles of Nigeria failed to qualify for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar after playing out a frustrating 1-1 draw against the Black Stars of Ghana at the Abuja international stadium on Tuesday night.
The pair had settled for a goalless draw in Kumasi last week Friday to set up a seemingly pulsating grand finale in Nigeria with pundits tipping the home side to advance but the Ghanaians came with a plan, stuck with it and ousted Nigeria.
Arsenal midfielder, Thomas Partey got the visitors in front with a top class finish as early as the 10th minute to silence the home crowd, and for all the bright starts the Super Eagles had, they were subdued by the Arsenal man’s goal.
William Troost Ekong leveled from the spot after the referee awarded a penalty to Nigeria, sending the Ghanaian goalkeeper the wrong way in the process and the stadium came to life with the hope that it was the start of a comeback.
Victor Osimhen did have the ball in the net after the half hour mark but it was chalked off for offside and the Video Assistant Referee upheld the on-field decision.
Ghana didn’t offer anything going forward for the rest of the game as Partey’s goal remained their only shot on target but they did just enough to restrict Nigeria to just two shots on target and managed to see out the game to earn a sensational ticket to the World Cup in November and December.
It was a case of AFCON 2.0 between Senegal and Egypt as the hosts beat AFCON finalists 1-0 after extra time to book yet another penalty shootout date. It had ended 1-0 in favor of Egypt in Cairo few days ago but African champions returned the favor with an early goal in Dakar.
In a bizarre manner, the first four kicks were missed including the first two from Napoli defender Koulibaly and Liverpool ace Mohammed Salah. Edouard Mendy saved Moustafa Mohammed before Sadio Mane fired in the winner to send the Terenga Lions to Qatar.
Cameroon left it late but delivered the biggest blow of the night by coming from behind to win the ticket at the expense of Algeria. Eric Choupo Moting had scored an early goal to cancel the Algerians’ advantage but the hosts leveled deep into extra time and it felt like they were on their way to Qatar.
Karl Toko Ekambi scored with what proved to be the last kick of the game to silence the stadium and send the Indomitable Lions to the World Cup in what would remain the shocker of the qualifying round.