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Gabon send Morocco out with last-gasp winner

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-01-27

Gabon sent Morocco crashing out of the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations on Friday. The co-hosts sealed a stunning 3-2 victory with a last-minute freekick from substitute Bruno Zita Mbanangoye. The win means Gabon qualify for the quarter-finals.

REUTERS - A stunning last-gasp freekick from substitute Bruno Zita Mbanangoye sent co-hosts Gabon into the African Nations Cup quarter-finals after a dramatic 3-2 win over Morocco on Friday.

The strike in the fifth minute of stoppage time from outside the penalty area, much to the delight of some 40,000 fans, completed a come from behind win and ensured an early exit for Morocco, one of the pre-tournament favourites.
 
Gabon’s win also ensured Tunisia’s progress from Group C.
 
Gabon had fought back from a halftime deficit with two goals in a three minute spell late in the game but that proved only the start of the drama to come.
 
They went 2-1 ahead, only to give away a penalty in the 89th minute. But then Mbanangoye hammered home a thunderbolt to lift the lid on delirious celebrations in the Gabon capital.
 
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang brought Gabon level with a volley in the 77th minute and then two minutes later provided Daniel Cousin with the second goal.
 
Cousin, brought on at halftime, turned and squeezed a shot from Aubameyang’s pass in off the post to spark a mini crowd invasion by home fans.
 
A handball by defender Charly Moussono saw Houcine Kharja calmly convert the resultant penalty to make it 2-2.
 
Kharja had also fired Morocco ahead in the 24th minute but they lost momentum in the second half.

 

Date created : 2012-01-28

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