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The Eagles of Mali can harbor regrets. While leading against Gambia, the Scorpions equalized in the final seconds (1-1). The Malians missed the opportunity to qualify directly for the round of 16.
The match of the winners of the first day of group F ended, Sunday, January 16, in a draw between The Gambia and The Mali (1-1). Dominating during the match, the Eagles came up against a solid Gambian team. While they had managed to open the scoring late in the game on a penalty, they were caught in the score in the last seconds of regulation time on another penalty.
The Malians, however, begin the meeting with better intentions. Mohamed Magassouba’s players create a first chance from the 2and minute. On a center back from Adama Traoré, Djenepo takes the ball, but does not manage to adjust his strike. The Eagles then monopolize the ball. At the 17and minute, Haïdara manages to hit on the left side, but his shot ends up in the side netting.
The Scorpions, on the other hand, have little possession of the ball, but they know how to be dangerous, especially on set pieces. At the 21and minute, Barrow is very close to opening the scoring with a powerful free kick from 30 meters, but his shot crashes on the post of the Malian goal. Six minutes later, his teammate Jallow also finds the post on a new free kick. In this first period, the domination is Malian, but the clearest occasions are Gambian.
A penalty story
After the break, the physiognomy remains the same. The Malians play the game, but without succeeding in concretizing. The meeting lacked rhythm, but little by little the Eagles increased the tempo. At the 56and minute, Bissouma takes a corner full axis outside the surface, but his shot goes over. Two minutes later, Adama Noss Traoré is also dangerous. After having managed to make the difference on the left side, he is stopped in his attack by a good exit from the Gambian goalkeeper. On a free kick, Haïdara also finds the target, but his shot is repelled by the Scorpions goalkeeper (63and).
The Eagles push and multiply the chances, but still can’t find the net. The issue does not occur until the 79th minute. After checking the VAR, a penalty is awarded for Mali after a foul by Gomez on Bissouma in the area. Ibrahima Koné does not tremble and transforms it for the second time in this CAN-2022 after his goal scored against Tunisia.
While they thought the victory had been won, the Malians conceded a penalty in the very last seconds of the match on a hand fault by Bissouma in the area. Gambian striker Barrow finds the skylight and equalizes for the Scorpions (90th).
Both teams missed the opportunity to get their ticket to the round of 16 of the CAN-2022, but are in a favorable position in group F. On the last day, Gambia will face Tunisia, while Mali will face Mauritania.