The Africa Cup of Nations has been the center of attraction for the entire continent since the start of the group stages. Despite being rescheduled, the host nation was able to make necessary arrangements for the safety of the players. This resulted in the tournament being postponed till January 2022. Since its initiation AFCON has been able to produce some brilliant games as each of the 24 teams entered the tournament with the hopes to win.
The road to Semi-Finals
Each team has played a total of 5 matches to reach the semi-final. After qualifying in the group stages, each team played the round of 16 and the quarter-finals to confirm their position in the semi-finals. Each of the four matches was extremely intense as the teams gave their best to qualify. Seeing as how the matches were knockout, the ambition of the players could clearly be seen on the pitch.
The quarter-finals saw four teams qualifying into the semis after their matches on 29th January 2022. and 30th January 2022. The results of the matches were:
Match 1: Gambia 0-2 Cameroon
Cameroon seemed to dominate the entire match throughout as they remained with 62% ball possession. They were extremely accurate with their passing and were able to get 7 shots on target. The dominant Cameroon team found the back of the net twice in the match. Both times Karl Toko Ekambi was the goal scorer during the 50th and 57th minutes of the match.
Match 2: Burkina Faso 1-0 Tunisia
Both teams were pretty even at the start of the match, with equal chances and great defense. The players were highly motivated and were playing without making any errors. Tunisia had better possession but was unable to capitalize on any of the opportunities. That is where Burkina Faso took the lead. In the extra time of the first half, Dango Ouattara managed to score the only goal of the match. This allowed the team to earn their place in the semi-finals.
Match 3: Egypt 2-1 Morocco
The third match of the quarter-finals was one of the most-watched as everyone had their expectations high for the result. Morocco and Egypt are both incredibly strong teams which is why it was anticipated to see who would go through to the next stage. Morocco scored a goal on penalty within 10 minutes and put Egypt under a lot of pressure.
It was Salah that scored after the first half and leveled things for Egypt. The game continued to extra time after both the teams found themselves level at the end of the 90 minutes. The second goal for Egypt came 10 minutes into the extra time, with Trezeguet scoring the goal. Egypt qualified for the semi-finals.
Match 4: Senegal 3-1 Equatorial Guinea
The final quarter-final was pretty one-sided as Senegal dominated throughout the match. The team played brilliantly and had one of the best performances of their entire tournament. Famara Diedhiou, Cheikhou Kouyate, and Ismaila Sarr all scored for Senegal to give them three goals on the scoreboard.
Fixtures for Semi-Finals
The semi-final will take place on 2nd and 3rd February 2022 at 2 pm Eastern Time. The matches will see two teams making their way to the final that will be played on 7th February. 2022, while the remaining teams will play the last match for third place. The matches being played for semi-finals will be as follows:
2nd February 2022 – Burkina Faso vs. Senegal
3rd February 2022 – Cameroon vs. Egypt