The knockout stages of the AFCON 2022 is starting to take shape now, and Tuesday's matches saw the elimination of a notable side.
Senegal and Guinea secured their safe passage into the second round of the African Cup of Nations (AFCON 2022). Morocco and Gabon also qualified for the next round of the continental cup on Tuesday (January 18).
However, the biggest shock of the day came in the form of Ghana’s elimination from Group C. The African giants suffered a shock 3-2 loss to minnows Comoros. As a result, they exited the tournament having not won a single game.
This is the first time in Ghana’s history that they did not win a game in the tournament. And there is a case to be made that they were hard done by in the final group game.
They spent a good portion of the second half with 10 men due to a harsh red card for lead striker Andre Ayew. However, that distracts from the fact they were poor all through and deserved to be eliminated.
WHAT A MATCH! 🤯
— #TotalEnergiesAFCON2021 🏆 (@CAF_Online) January 18, 2022
Of the other Group C teams, it was Morocco and Gabon who had the chance to top the group. As fate would have it, they faced off in the final group match on Tuesday.
They played out an eventful 2-2 draw, with an Achraf Hakimi goal in the 84th minute rescuing a point for Morocco. Of the 4 goals, three came after the 70th minute, meaning the match finished in tight fashion.
There was no such drama, however, for Senegal. The Lions of Teranga secured their passage into the knockouts with a 0-0 draw over Malawi.
However, the point dropped proved to be a problem for Malawi. They finished the group stages in third with 4 points, the same number as Guinea.
However, it was the latter who finished second due to their head-to-head record. And this is despite the fact they suffered a shock 2-1 loss to Zimbabwe in their final group game.
Zimbabwe captain, Knowledge Musona, and Kudakwashe Mahachi scored in the first half to give the side a consolation win. They had lost their first 2 games and were thus already out of the reckoning for the second round.
But Guinea are not without problems of their own. Their captain Naby Keita will be unavailable for their knockout game after he got a second yellow card against Zimbabwe.
However, it was the Liverpool midfielder who pulled one back for the team in the second half. But an equalising goal proved to be elusive in the end.