January 30, 2024 08:50 am | Updated February 01, 2024 06:41 am IST – YAMOUSSOUKRO
Moussa Niakhate missed his penalty within the shoot-out as holders Senegal tumbled out of the Africa Cup of Nations after a drama-filled 5-4 loss to hosts Ivory Coast following a 1-1 draw on the Charles Konan Banny Stadium of their last-16 conflict on Monday.
Senegal had been fast out the blocks and took the lead inside 4 minutes as Sadio Mane’s cross from the left was chested down by Habib Diallo, whose thunderous shot from 10-yards settled within the prime nook of the web.
Mane was lucky to not get a purple card shortly after that following a poor problem, however Senegal couldn’t add to their lead and paid the worth when the Ivorians had been awarded a transparent penalty and equalised by means of Franck Kessie 4 minutes from the top of the 90 minutes.
Ivory Coast will now face the winner of Tuesday’s last-16 tie between Mali and Burkina Faso within the quarterfinals on Saturday.
The Ivorians had been in disarray simply days in the past. Hammered 4-0 in a report loss on residence soil by Equatorial Guinea, they had been on the verge of elimination and sacked coach Jean-Louis Gasset, changing him with assistant Emerse Fae.
But a fortuitous set of outcomes elsewhere noticed them squeeze into the last-16 and so they put up a much-improved show in opposition to a Senegal aspect that had gained all three of their pool matches with relative ease.
“It’s very emotional, the last few days were tough for us,” Ivory Coast striker Sebastien Haller mentioned. “We have opened the door and given ourselves a chance. We can forget now about what happened in the group stages.”
The hosts had been the higher aspect on the night time and might need wrapped issues up earlier than the necessity for penalties, however will merely be relieved to struggle one other day having averted an embarrassing early exit from their very own event.
Leading 1-0, Senegal thought they need to have had a penalty within the second half when Ismaila Sarr went down within the field, however the match officers determined there was not sufficient contact to ship him sprawling, a lot to the annoyance of coach Aliou Cisse. Mane additionally fired large when he ought to have scored.
The Ivorians might have been stage when Nicolas Pepe had a transparent shot of purpose however couldn’t beat Edouard Mendy, earlier than they had been awarded a transparent spot-kick on VAR evaluation as the previous was clattered within the field by the latter and Kessie buried his kick.
The recreation went to penalties and the unlucky Niakhate missed his aspect’s third kick as he struck the publish and the Ivorians held their nerve to safe a spot within the quarterfinals.