2018 Tag

Johannesburg (AFP) North African nations Morocco and Tunisia took contrasting routes Saturday as they qualified for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Morocco scored twice within five minutes through Nabil Dirar and Medhi Benatia during the opening half to triumph 2-0 in the Ivory Coast and win Group C. The “Atlas Lions” are going back to the tournament for the first time since 1998 after finishing with 12 points, having not conceded a goal during the six-match group campaign. Ivory Coast, who never looked like recovering from the first-half blows,Read More
Abidjan (AFP) Crystal Palace striker Wilfried Zaha will make his long-awaited debut for Ivory Coast in a do-or-die World Cup qualifier against Morocco on November 11. The 24-year-old has never played for the African nation which he left with his family when he was just four. However, Zaha will need to hit the ground running as Ivory Coast have to defeat Morocco in the final qualifying game to ensure a fourth successive World Cup appearance after making the finals in 2006, 2010 and 2014. “The Elephants” trail Morocco by twoRead More
Abuja (AFP) Chelsea’s Victor Moses will miss Nigeria’s final 2018 World Cup qualifier in Algeria and the friendly against Argentina with a hamstring injury, while coach Gernot Rohr recalled in-form youngster Henry Onyekuru. Nigeria had already qualified for next year’s finals in Russia with Moses a key figure, but the 26-year-old suffered the injury in Chelsea’s loss to Crystal Palace two weeks ago. Rohr called up 20-year-old forward Onyekuru, who has scored seven goals this season on loan at Anderlecht from Premier League club Everton and made his international debutRead More
Cairo (AFP) Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah converted a stoppage-time penalty to give Egypt a dramatic 2-1 win over Congo Brazzaville Sunday and a place at the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Salah put Egypt ahead during the second half in Alexandria only for Arnold Bouka Moutou to equalise two minutes from the end of regular time. Victory gave Egypt an uncatchable four-point lead over Uganda in Group E with one round of fixtures remaining. Uganda were held 0-0 by Ghana in Kampala Saturday. A defensive blunder allowed constant menace SalahRead More
Johannesburg (AFP) There are five places reserved for Africa at the 2018 World Cup in Russia and Nigeria, Tunisia, and Egypt could fill three of them this weekend. Nigeria will secure a sixth appearance at the global football showpiece by winning in Uyo against Zambia, the only other Group B contenders. Tunisia are away to Guinea and must better the result of second-place Democratic Republic of Congo, who face Libya, to clinch qualification from Group A Egypt can end 28 years in the World Cup wilderness with a home victoryRead More
Abuja (AFP) Nigeria host Zambia in their penultimate 2018 World Cup qualifier on Saturday knowing that victory would secure a sixth finals appearance since first qualifying in 1994. The 2-1 win in the reverse fixture in Ndola 12 months ago helped get the country behind a team who had failed to feature at back-to-back Africa Cup of Nations. It set the tone for the Super Eagles’ excellent campaign in a tough Group B, with Nigeria not dropping points until matchday four in Yaounde. The 1-1 draw in Cameroon, combined withRead More
Dakar (AFP) The 2018 World Cup qualifier between South Africa and Senegal will be replayed on either November 8 or November 9, the Senegalese Football Federation (FSF) said on Friday. The FSF said FIFA had decided on the possible dates for the rearranged game, with the initial 2-1 South Africa victory on November 12, 2016 having been chalked off after the match was manipulated by referee Joseph Lamptey. The Ghanaian awarded South Africa a controversial penalty in the original Group D encounter. Lamptey has since been given a life banRead More
Johannesburg (AFP) South Africa football bosses will meet Monday to discuss a “devastating” FIFA order that a 2018 World Cup qualifier against Senegal must be replayed after the referee manipulated the result. National association president Danny Jordaan said Saturday in a statement that issues for debate could include appealing the decision, writing to FIFA or taking legal action. He called the order to replay the match during the November 6-14 international window “devastating news that had stressed South Africans”. South Africa defeated Senegal 2-1 at the group stage last November,Read More
Soweto (South Africa) (AFP) South Africa may appeal a FIFA decision ordering the replay of a 2018 World Cup qualifier against Senegal after the referee manipulated the result. “The South African Football Association (SAFA) is studying the contents of the report and will issue a statement on intentions to challenge that decision,” the organisation said Thursday. FIFA said the match, won 2-1 by South Africa, must be replayed after international sport judicial body CAS rejected an appeal by Ghanaian referee Joseph Lamptey against a life ban. South Africa scored offRead More
Paris (AFP) FIFA on Wednesday ordered a World Cup qualifier between South Africa and Senegal to be replayed after the referee was banned for match fixing. The November 2016 tie, which will be restaged in November, was won by South Africa 2-1 after Ghanaian referee Joseph Lamptey awarded them a controversial penalty. Lamptey was initially suspended for three months by African football’s ruling body CAF for awarding a penalty for a non-existant handball”, with FIFA handing down the life ban in March. News of the rematch comes as a boostRead More