Senegal Defeat Egypt on Penalties to Win AFCON 2021

February 6, 2022
Senegal AFCON 2021

By Adedapo Adesanya

Senegal have emerged the champions of the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2021, defeating Egpyt 4-2 on penalties in Cameroon.

The Teranga Lions were held to a goalless affair after 120 minutes of football with the Pharaohs of Egypt at the Olembe Stadium in the country’s capital, Yaounde.

Despite Senegal’s dominance, both teams were separated by a penalty shoot-out.

The Teranga Lions overcame the 2019 disappointment in Egypt to claim their first AFCON title in their third final appearance.

Senegal started their push for an opener early in the encounter and it resulted in a penalty after Mohamed Abdelmonem brought down Saliou Ciss in the fourth minute.

The Egypt defender got the first yellow card of the game and Liverpool forward, Sadio Mane stepped forward to take the spot-kick but his shot was saved by goalkeeper Mohamed Abou Gabal.

The miss did not deter Senegal who kept on the pressure for an opening goal with Sarr’s run and creativity on the flanks, however, the 23-year-old’s crosses were not converted.

Egypt had their first shot on target in the 43rd minute as Salah forced Edouard Mendy to make a save with his left-footed shot inside the box.

The first half ended with Senegal’s dominance and it continued after the break with Mane winning a free-kick on the edge of the box but Idrissa Gueye’s effort went wide off target in the 48th minute.

Coach Cisse switched his attacking tactics and drafted fresh legs upfront with Bamba Dieng and Boulaye Dia replacing Famara Diedhiou and Ismaila Sarr respectively in the 77th minute.

Aliou Cisse’s men continued their dominance in the extra-time and Dieng came close with a header but it was parried by Abou Gabal for a corner-kick.

The Marseille striker had another attempt at goal with a superb shot from about 30 yards but it was saved by Gabaski again.

It was Egypt’s turn to test Mendy in the 115th minute but the Chelsea goalkeeper palmed over Marwan Hamdy’s shot.

For Senegal, Koulibaly and Abdou Diallo stepped forward to convert the first two attempts in the penalty shoot-out but Egypt missed their second effort as Abdelmonem’s strike hit the upright.

Gabaski was called to action and he saved Bouna Sarr’s effort while Mendy comfortably saved Mohanad Lasheen’s shot and Mane stepped up to score the match-winning kick.

Adedapo Adesanya

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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