The world, especially Africans, passionately watched/viewed the 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) from June 21 to July 19. It was an unpredictable tournament, as bigger teams/countries were won by small ones, vice versa, several penalties were paid, as the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) was used to cancel and approve some goals in doubt, among other uncommon things.
Egypt, the host country, started the tournament with a 1-0 win against Zimbabwe in the first match, while Algeria ended the tournament with a slim 1-0 win against Senegal, in the last match (finals). Nigeria in group ‘B’ played against Burundi, Guinea and Madagascar. The super Eagles won Burundi and Guinea 1-0 and 2-1, respectively, but lost 0-2 to Madagascar, before they proceeded to the knock out stage to face Cameroon that came first in Group ‘F’. The Nigeria vs Cameroon match was played with much tension as many Nigerians thought Cameroon would win Nigeria, but it ended 3-2 in favour of Nigeria. One unique thing about that match was that, Samuel Eto of Cameroon and Kanu Nwankwo of Nigeria, were very passionate about the match as they cheered their countries/teams up like they it was in those days when they were playing for their countries. Cameroon took the lead with a first half goal, but Ighalo’s brace equalized both the first and second goals, before Iwobi gave the cutting razor.
Nigeria played and defeated South Africa in the quarter finals 2-1, as Ekong’s 89th minute goal eliminated South Africa. Incidentally, the Super Eagles could not proceed to the finals as they were humiliated with the 94th minute goal from Algerian captain, Marez, after 4 minutes added time: It ended 2-1 in favour of Algeria.
The Super Eagles of Nigeria did not come back empty handed, as they were able to beat Tunisia 1-0 for the bronze medal, third position, on the 17th of July 2019.
Today, Algeria is the defending champion, after defeating Senegal with a lone goal. This is the second time Algeria is becoming African champion, after being champion 29 years ago. Out of the seven matches played by Algeria, they conceded only two goals, one from Ivory Coast during the quarter finals match, the other one from Nigeria during the semi finals match, that means, Algeria did not concede any goal from their first match to the fourth match, quarter finals, including the finals, as they played unbeaten in the just concluded 2019 African Nations Cup. Ishmael Bennacer of Algeria, was named the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the tournament, as he played all the seven games, won the title, made 3 assists, won Man of the match award, twice, had twelve successful dribbles, won ten tackles, etc.
On their own impacts, Mane and Ismaili of Senegal completed 23 and 17 dribbles respectively, Tunisian Trezeguet completed 15 dribbles, Sofiane Bouufal and Youssef Msakni completed 14 dribbles, Nigerian Samuel Chukwueze completed 13 dribbles, while, Marez, Youcef Belaili and Ismael Bennacer of Algeria, completed 12 dribbles each.
The following players made the Best/First Eleven Players of the 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON);
> three from Algeria, viz, Atal, Gumas and Mahrez.
> three from Senegal, Mane, Koulibali and goalkeeper Gohis.
> four players from Nigeria, made the best 11 list , thus, Ighalo, Ndidi, Emeruo and Aina.
Ighalo of Nigeria equally won the golden boot, having scored a total of five goals and became the highest goal scorer.
At the end of the tournament, Algeria came first, with the gold medals and trophy, Senegal came second with the silver medals, while Nigeria grabbed the bronze medals with as the third place winner. The 2019 Nations cup which started on the 21st of June 2019, ended on July 19, 2019. Egypt the host country, is no longer the defending champion, the current defending champion is Algeria, after struggling it with the weak but hungry Senegal, that has not lifted the trophy even for once. The next AFCON, 2021, will be hosted by Cameroon, to be played by expectedly 24 countries/teams; it is expected to start from June 11 and end July 9, 2021, in six different stadia but five cities in Cameroon.
Antiquity without iniquitous iniquity cum inimical indignity.
Rotn. Antiquity Blue Blooded Prince A.A.A.
A fan of Enyimba, A good footballer/defender]