AFCON round-up: Mohamed Salah scores again as Egypt beat Malawi 4-0 and Namibia stun Cameroon to claim their first win over the Indomitable Lions as holders Senegal and Ivory Coast continue
Mo Salah scored once again in a 4-0 thrashing of Malawi to retain first place in Group D of the Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers, while Senegal and Côte d’Ivoire also recorded victories to continue their unbeaten run.
The Liverpool star scored his 49th goal for Egypt against Malawi – after netting his 48th just four days earlier against the same opposition as his side cruised to a comfortable victory in Cairo.
Barcelona star Franck Kessie scored Ivory Coast’s goal in their 2-0 victory over Comoros – who reached the last 16 of the 2022 tournament – with Brahim Sanjari opening the scoring in the first half.
For the defending champions, it was a narrow 1-0 win over Mozambique thanks to a Bolay Dia goal, as the defending champions sought a narrow victory despite naming a strong squad.
Arguably the shock of the night came in Soweto, as Namibia – hosts despite playing in South Africa – beat 2022 hosts Cameroon 2-1.
Mo Salah scored for the second consecutive match against Malawi after facing them just four days earlier
Ivory Coast remained unbeaten in their AFCON qualifying campaign with a 2-0 win over Comoros.
Peter Shaluleli opened the scoring in the second half, before an Absalom Nanjana Kamutyasa goal ensured The Brave Warriors secured their first-ever victory over Cameroon, despite Vincent Aboubakar’s late goal in Group C.
South Africa kept the pressure on World Cup semi-finalists Morocco – who top Group K despite only playing twice, after Mihlali Mayambela’s 53rd-minute goal proved the winner.
William Jebor equalized for the home side after a 19th-minute opener from Zahele Lebasa, but Liberia could not find a second goal to level the game, and are now third in the group, winless after three matches.
In Group J, Botswana hosted a five-goal thriller with Equatorial Guinea, which saw the visitors come out on top, defeating Zebras 3-2 to finish second behind Tunisia.
The National Thunder team advanced with an unanswered goal through Emilio Nsui, before Matcha Chida Elias equalized, but the guests took the lead just before the end of the first half after an own goal from Lebogang Ditsel.
Ivan Salvador made it 3–1 against Equatorial Guinea, before a 66th-minute penalty by Kapilo Sekanying secured a tight finish, but Botswana were never able to equalize again.
Boulaye Dia scored the only goal of the match as the defending champions defeated Mozambique
The other match in the group saw Tunisia retain top spot with a 1-0 win over neighboring Libya thanks to Haitham Jouini’s 16th-minute goal at the February Martyrs Stadium.
Uganda secured an important 1-0 win on the road against Tanzania as the race for second place in Group F heats up, with Algeria already off the top spot, with four wins in a row.
Mali suffered defeat for the first time in their qualifying campaign as Gambia exited with all three points, with Omar Kohli’s 79th-minute goal setting the difference between the two teams in Group G.
Burkina Faso’s dominance continued at the top of Group B, after the Stallions drew 1-1 with Togo and Cape Verde beat Eswatini 1-0 to continue their impressive run, with The Blues Sharks currently occupying second place in the group.