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HomeAfrican FootballIvory Coast Out As 10 WCQ Play-Off Sides Confirmed

Ivory Coast Out As 10 WCQ Play-Off Sides Confirmed

Ivory Coast were dumped out of the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers by Cameroon while Tunisia thumped Zambia as the final two nations booked their place in the play-offs.

The Elephants travelled to Douala as Group D leaders but left lamenting what could have been as they missed out on a second consecutive World Cup finals.

Karl Toko Ekambi profited from a lapse of concentration in defence during the first half and that proved the difference as the Indomitable Lions finished on 15 points – two ahead of their opponents.

Tunisia, Zambia and Equatorial Guinea all had mathematical chances of qualifying as Group B winners but the North African were firmly in the driving seat.

And they proved why when they swept aside an in-from Zambia 3-1 thanks to an opening half blitz from Aïssa Laïdouni, Mohamed Dräger and Ali Maâloul. Fashion Sakala pulled one back ten minutes from time but it proved nothing more than a consolation for the Chipolopolo.

African champions Algeria and Nigeria both advanced to the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifying play-offs after hard-fought draws on Tuesday evening.

The Champions of Africa and Super Eagles both needed one point to advance while Burkina Faso and Cape Verde needed victory to secure entry to the third round.

And they made it hard for their more illustrious counterparts. Manchester City winger Riyad Mahrez opened the with a deft finish in the 21st minute for Les Verts away from home which looked to be setting them on their way to a routine win.

But the Stallions fought back valiantly on two occasions with goals from Zakaria Sanogo and Issoufou Dayo scoring on either side of Sofiane Feghouli’s 68th-minute effort.

The result saw Algeria win Group A with 14 points, two points ahead of their opponents, with both sides finishing the campaign unbeaten.

In Group C, things were just as tight as Gernot Rohr’s side laboured to a 1-1 draw against the Islanders as Victor Osmimhen and Stopira’s first-half goals seeing the two sides share the spoils.

But they were made to sweat for their qualification in Lagos as Cape Verde pushed for the winner in a subdued display for the home side.

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However, with the point apiece, Nigeria finished on 13 points, two ahead of the Criollos.

Nigeria and Algeria join Egypt, Morocco, Mali, Senegal and Ghana in the next round – albeit the Black Stars qualification being contested by Bafana Bafana via an appeal to FIFA and CAF.

Lorenz Kohler
Lorenz Kohler
Lorenz Köhler is an award-winning South African football journalist. Having cut his teeth in the industry working at Kick-Off Magazine, he is now iDiski Times' senior digital content writer. He specialises in breaking top African football stories and transfers with a major focus on the 'big-three' Mamelodi Sundowns, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates and CAF inter-club and international competitions. In 2021 he was listed amongst the top-five journalists under 30 in Print Media for the AIPS Awards.