Gabon beat Mauritania
Posted: 22 January 2014 Time: 21:07
Gabon finshed first in Group D to qualify for the quarter-finals of the African Nations Championship after beating Mauritania 4-2 at Free State Stadium on Wednesday night.
Mauritania twice led in the game and looked as though they would get a point at least until Gabon struck twice in injury-time to seal the win.
Moulaye Khalil netted a brace for Mauritania and also had a goal disallowed, while Duval Nzembi, Aaron Appindangoye and a brace from Bonaventure Sokambi gave Gabon the win.
Mauritania made a fast start and were ahead inside four minutes. A pass was deflected into the path of Khalil and he showed great composure to fire past the Gabon keeper.
But that lead was short-lived as Gabon hit back almost immediately. Edmond Mouelet's deep cross to the back post was headed home unchallenged by Nzembi with seven minutes on the clock.
Frank Engonga flashed a low shot just wide of goal after another great cross from Mouelet, before the latter was forced off with injury on 14 minutes.
Daniel Cousin should have put Gabon ahead when he burst through a tackle and with just the goalkeeper to beat, flashed the ball against the post.
Khalil thought he had added a second for Mauritania at the other end, but his goal was ruled out for offside.
The same player had a good chance at the back post saved, before he finally did put his side in front.
Substitute Ely Cheikh Voulany played an excellent through-ball that set Khalil free. Gabon keeper Moto came well off his line and could not collect, giving the Mauritania striker the easy chance to score into an empty net.
Gabon again hit the wood work when Romuald Entsitsigui crashed the ball against the crossbar from the edge of the area.
But they did have their equaliser five minutes from time when Samson Mbingui’s corner was powerfully headed home by Appindangoye.
Entsitsigui hit the post just minutes later as Gabon provided a strong finish, and would score twice more.
Sokambi’s shot from 30-yards was deflected into the goal, before he converted a late penalty to add salt to the Mauritania wound.