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Senegal, Cape Verde reach AFCON last 16

Senegal have clinched a spot in the next round of the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) with one group game to spare thanks to…

Senegal have clinched a spot in the next round of the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) with one group game to spare thanks to a 3-1 win over Cameroon in Yamoussoukro on Friday night.

Ismaila Sarr of Marseille put the reigning champions ahead early on and later set up Habib Diallo to make it 2-0.

Jean-Charles Castelletto pulled one back, but Senegal were not to be denied a convincing victory and talisman Sadio Mane put the outcome beyond doubt late on.

Senegal have a maximum six points after two Group C matches, while Cameroon have only one and their hopes of advancing to the last 16 are in the balance.

“I remember that in 2017 we lost to Cameroon in the quarter-finals, so during this match we did everything to win,” said Marseille forward Sarr.

Bebe stunner
Later on in Group C, Guinea, again missing star striker Serhou Guirassy, beat Gambia 1-0 at the same venue thanks to Aguibou Camara’s second-half goal.

The result leaves Guinea second in the section on four points, meaning they need just a draw against Senegal in their next match to guarantee qualification for the last 16, while a victory will see them progress as group winners.

Cameroon and Gambia will meet each other next and can both hope to at least progress as one of the four best third-placed sides.

Earlier, Cape Verde became the first team to qualify for the last 16 thanks to a convincing 3-0 win over Mozambique in Abidjan.

Former Manchester United forward Bebe set the Atlantic Ocean island nation on their way with a remarkable first-half free-kick from 40 metres at the Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium.

Captain Ryan Mendes doubled their lead just after half-time and Kevin Pina wrapped up the win with a stunning strike midway through the second half.

Cape Verde’s biggest-ever AFCON victory leaves them on six points from two games and means they are now certain to top Group B, after they beat Ghana 2-1 in their opening game.

“I don’t know how far we can go. Now we are into the last 16 and we just need to keep working as we have been,” said Mendes.

“We know it won’t be easy but we believe in ourselves and our work.”

Cape Verde already know they will stay in Abidjan for a last-16 tie against a third-placed team on January 29.

Mozambique, appearing at their fifth Cup of Nations, have still never won a match in 14 attempts at the tournament.

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