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Friday, October 22, 2021

Comoros qualify for AFCON, first time in their history

Comoros have qualified for the Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) for the first time in their history.

Their qualification came after they picked up a point in a 0-0 draw with Togo at home on Thursday.

The final whistle drew wild celebrations in the stadium, with the players and coaches hugging, jumping and dancing.

This was as the reality of playing at Africa’s biggest competition dawned on them.

The result in Moroni sees Comoros move to nine points ahead of their final match against Egypt and this means the worst they can finish is second spot.

The islanders’ four points each against both Kenya and Togo coupled with the point at home against Egypt have seen them clinch a ticket to Cameroon.

Togo on the other hand have seen their qualification hopes dashed as they are bottom with just two points.

Egypt won the remaining qualification slot after picking a point against Kenya in the other group match in Nairobi.

The small island nation carried the dreams of an entire country.

Their first priority was ensuring they guarded their rear well and the first half did not have many goalscoring opportunities.

In the second period, Togo started stronger and they had two back-to-back chances, both falling to striker Ihlas Bebou.

First, in the 51st minute, the striker could not connect a Abou-Samiou Tchoutchoui cross from the right, his point-blank connection being blocked a few yards off goal.

Three minutes later, he was picked out with a brilliant cross from Richard Nane on the left, but the striker glanced his free header wide off target.

The two sides made changes, Togo going for an attacking mode with Ismail Ouro-Agoro coming in for Yayra Josue Doke.

Comoros brought in steel into their midfield, Fouad Bachirou coming in for Ahmed Mogni.

The home side was efficient in defending their rear and while Togo declined in their attack, the islanders sought to keep possession and knock the ball around the park.

Late on, they had a chance when substitute Youssouf Ibrohim raced on to a cross from the right.

But the Togolese goalkeeper spread his body nicely on the ground to block his connection.(NAN)

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