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banner Monday, 4 February, 2002, 21:36 GMT
Dakar Lions beat brave Simbas
Sylvain Ndaiye rides Felix Muamba's scything challenge
The match was peppered with dangerous play and cards
Senegal 2-0 DR Congo
Quarter-final, Bamako

DR Congo's brave fight was not enough to overcome a Senegal side in the last of the Nations Cup quarter-finals.

Goals from Alassane Diao and El-Hadj Diouf put an end to a spirited Simbas performance.

This was by far the best of the quarter-finals, with both teams looking to win the game from the start rather than simply avoid defeat.

The tone was set in the third minute, with Muamba shooting over the Senegal bar.

A central defender so far up the pitch was unheard of in the other three quarter-finals.

This match was end-to-end stuff from that moment on, though the pace was often too frenetic for the strikers, who frequently found themselves offside or shooting lamely when more time was needed.

Camara misses again
Camara went to pieces whenever faced by Tokala
No-one was more guilty of this than Senegal's Henri Camara, who with more composure could easily have had a hat-trick.

But where he was profligate, it took one moment of unerring accuracy from a defender to finally get a goal for Senegal.

A free-kick from the right was lofted into the DR Congo penalty area by Khalilou Fadiga, and Diao was there with a brilliant glancing header.

Congo's goalkeeper Tokala had no chance to get anywhere neat it.

But unlike South Africa and Egypt, who were both lacking ideas once they went behind, DR Congo did not give up.

Manzangala had a great chance to equalise as the Senegal defence drifted away from him into the centre, but he shot hopelessly wide.

The DR Congo saw much of the ball in the second half, but no matter what they did they just could not force the ball past Senegal's goalkeeper Tony Sylva.

Horrible foul

With only five minutes left they needed to push, and streamed forwards with only two men back.

It was inevitable they would get caught, and when substitute Soulimane Camara burst forward, he found himself virtually unopposed.

A simple square ball to El-Hadj Diouf and it was all over, despite protests that Camara was offside.

The match ended in undignified silliness after Tekumu committed a horrible foul.

As the referee sent him off players and managers of both sides surrounded him.

It was a sorry end for the Simbas, but this was definitely Senegal's day.

They now go through to face Nigeria in the Modibo Keita Stadium in Bamako on Thursday.

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 ON THIS STORY
Adrian Hobart reports for the BBC
"This was a match of breathless action"
See also:

04 Feb 02 |  Cup of Nations
Clockwatch: Senegal 2-0 DR Congo
03 Feb 02 |  Cup of Nations
Super Eagles scrape through
04 Feb 02 |  Cup of Nations
Mboma's moment puts Lions through
Links to more Cup of Nations stories are at the foot of the page.

 

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