…beat Egypt 2-1
Cameroon came from a goal down to defeat Egypt 2-1 in the final of the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations in Libreville on Sunday night.
Vincent Aboubakar scored a late winner for the Indomitable Lions, who had earlier cancelled out the Pharaohs’ opening goal, to claim their fifth AFCON title and a first since 2002. For Egypt, the loss is their first in a Nations Cup finals match since 2004.
After a cagey opening, Egypt broke the deadlock midway through the first half when returning midfielder Mohamed Elneny scored with a shot from a tight angle, which had the beating of goalkeeper Fabrice Ondoua at his near post.
Cameroon suffered another blow just after the half hour mark when influential defender, Adolphe Teikeu succumbed to injury and had to be replaced by Nicolas N’Koulou.
Yet the Indomitable Lions ended the half as the stronger side, pushing Egypt back into their own half and causing a few nervy moments in the North Africans’ defence. Nonetheless, Egypt led 1-0 at the interval.
Cameroon made a second change at the start of the second half, sending an experienced striker Vincent Aboubakar in place of Robert Ndip Tambe, but it was their first substitute, N’Koulou, who made a huge impact just before the hour mark.
The defender brought the West Africans level in the 59th minute when he got on the end of an in-swinging cross from Benjamin Moukandjo and turned his header into the back of the net to make it 1-1.
Ten minutes later, he threatened a second from a corner kick but put his header off target, as Cameroon went up a gear and began to really dominate proceedings in Libreville.
The match looked to be headed to extra time, but in the 88th minute, Aboubakar controlled a long ball, chipped it over the head of a defender and volleyed beyond Essam El Hadary to win the match and the championship for the Indomitable Lions.