Afcon Qualifying round-up: Sierra Leone out, Cameroon qualify


Cameroon edged past DR Congo 1-0 to claim Group D for a spot in the finals courtesy of a 71st-minute winner from Vincent Aboubakar in Yaoundé.

They will face Ivory Coast on Wednesday in Abidjan as leaders of the Group D no matter the outcome, 13 points from five matches is an automatic qualification for the Indomitable Lions.

Ivory Coast cruised to a 5-1 victory over Sierra Leone on Friday in their 2015 Afcon Qualifier in Abidjan thanks to a brace from Salomon Kalou and goals by Kolo Toure, Max Gradel and Gervinho, but still need a point to qualify.

Sierra Leone in five matches scored 2 goals and conceded 11 goals, drew 1 and lost 4.

Meanwhile, South Africa are among ten qualifiers for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations slated for equatorial Guinea.

South Africa, Zambia, Burkina Faso, Gabon, Senegal, Cameroon, Algeria, Cape Verde, Tunisia, and host Equatorial Guinea are all ready for next year’s tournament which will be played from 17 January to 8 February.

South Africa beat Sudan 2-1 on Saturday in their first match since the slaying of Captain Senzo Meyiwa.

South Africa top Group A with 11 points from five matches, they visit Nigeria on Wednesday.

Defending champions Nigeria beat Congo Brazzaville 2-0 to revive their bid to qualify.

Nigeria now have to beat South Africa in Uyo on Wednesday to ensure automatic qualification regardless of Congo’s result in Sudan.

Zambia pipped hosts Mozambique 1-0 in Maputo to qualify in Group F with table toppers Cape Verde, while Burkina Faso and Gabon qualified from Group C.

Burkina Faso beat Lesotho 1-0 in Maseru and Gabon held Angola to a goalless draw in Luanda.

Guinea blew open Group E after they trounced Togo 4-1 in Lome, and they now have to beat Uganda by more than a 2-0 score line in their final match at home on Wednesday to book their ticket to the finals.

Both Uganda and Guinea now have seven points, but Uganda are ahead on the head-to-head rule after they beat the Syli Stars 2-0 in Kampala in September.

Ghana, who are still top of the group with eight points, host Togo, who have six points.

Uganda pipped Ghana 1-0 on Saturday thanks to an early Savio Kabugo goal after the teams drew 1-1 in Kumasi three months ago.

Malawi revived their hopes of qualifying after they beat Mali 2-0 at the Kamuzu Banda Stadium in Blantyre in Group B.

Second-half goals by Robert Ngambi and Esau Kanyenda earned Malawi only their second win in the qualifying series.

The Flames now have six points from five matches, the same as Mali, with Algeria already qualified.

On Wednesday, Mali host Algeria and Malawi are away in Ethiopia.

Senegal joined Tunisia in qualifying from Group G after they stunned seven-time champions Egypt 1-0 in Cairo.

They now have 10 points from five matches, a point behind leaders Tunisia, and they could still win the group on Wednesday, when they host bottom team Botswana.

Mame Biram Diouf scored the all-important goal after only eight minutes for Senegal.

Egypt now needs to win in Tunisia to stand any chance of finishing as the best third-placed qualifier.

Islanders Cape Verde won Group F after they beat Niger 3-1. They now have 12 points from five matches, four points more than closest rivals Zambia, who they play away on Wednesday.

By Alie A Bittar


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