After Humbling Nigeria, Cameroun Are Next
After Humbling Nigeria, Cameroun Are Next Website
The Black Stars of Ghana have set up a crunchy semi-final duel against the Indomitable Lions of Cameroun after accomplishing a demolition exercise that claimed Guinea, Namibia, Morocco and Nigeria, as casualties of the 26th Africa Cup of Nations. Ghana and Cameroun, two of the most accomplished sides in Nations Cup history, set up the semi-final duel, after the Black Stars had knocked out Nigeria 2-1 on Sunday while Cameroun pushed out Tunisia by a hard fought 3-2 margin in a match that went into extra time. It is an encounter that would determine whether Ghana or Cameroun would advance to the final stage of the tournament and proceed from there into the history books as the next after Egypt to be crowned five times Africa champions.In the other quarter-final match played yesterday, George Ernest Asare, reports that Angola’s dream of having a semi-final berth in the ongoing Ghana 2008 tournament ended at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi when they succumbed 1-2 to the might of Egypt giving the Egyptians a ticket to the semi-finals and keeping their dreams of defending the trophy they won two years ago on course. Angola who had a massive support at the Kumasi Stadium equalised a few minutes through Manucho after Egypt had opened the scores through a spot kick by Hosny Abd Rabou. They gave the Egyptians a cheap goal through a defensive blunder in the 38th minute when Carlos Alonso’s attempt to clear a ball hit Egypt’s Amr Zaki and bounced into the net with goalkeeper Luis Joao stranded. Egypt could have registered a cricket scoreline, especially in the second half, where they created a lot of chances but brilliant goalkeeping by Luis Joao ensured that Angola went home as gallant losers. Inexperience cost the Angolans rather than the might of Egypt as they took the game to their opponents and created chances but squandered them to the surprise of the partisan Kumasi soccer fans who were urging them on. While Egypt relied on long balls with swift inter positional changes and fast runs to outwit their opponents, Angola massed up in defence where Airosa Marco, Alonso Carlos, Joao Yamba and Amado Flavio formed a barrier to prevent the hungry Egyptian attackers from scoring an early goal. In one of their movements in the 10th minute, Mohamed Abdel Nabi Ibrahim succeeded in outwitting the unyielding Egyptian defence and entered the box, but with the keeper at his mercy he found his touch sweep past the area. Egypt took charge of the midfield where Abdrabou Abdel Moteleb, Mohamed Shawky Aly Salam and Mohamed Mohamed Abou Trika operated, pushing their attackers forward, and succeeded in earning a spot kick after Moteleb’s shot hit the hand of an opponent. Moteleb converted the kick to give Egypt the lead. But the referee ignored a similar offence when a hard pressed Egyptian defender also handled the ball in his area. Undaunted,the Angolans started mounting attack and their efforts yielded dividend in the 28th minute Mateus Alberto sent an intelligent volley which hit the back of the net before skipper Kamal Tawfik El Hadary in post for Egypt could react. Mateus Alberto picked the ball midway in the area of Egypt, beat two defenders before sending a 25-metre volley to bring the scores at par to give Kumasi fans something to jubilate about. Angola continued the attack, hoping to increase the score line but always fumbled in the area of Egypt and sometimes gave faulty passes. The Egyptians who relied on counter attacks increased the tally in the 38th minute when Carlos Alonso saw his clearance in the area hit Amr Hasan Zakry Mansour for the second goal for Egypt. Just after resumption, Alberto Mateus of Angola had an opportunity to bring Angola on level terms but his touch missed the post by inches to the relief of the Egyptians. As the game progressed Angola gained confidence and initiated series of attacks in an attempt to equalize but they always fumbled or allowed the Egyptian defenders to clear the ball to safety, making it impossible for them to realise their dreams of having a semi final berth.