Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

WEB NEWS

Calls for ISIS media blackout after execution of James Foley

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users divided over Darren Wilson

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users take on 'Ice Bucket Challenge' to fight ALS

Read more

ENCORE!

From Paris's Liberation to 'arresting' art in Avignon

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

Ferguson riots: Pressure mounts on Obama

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'The pen is mightier than the sword'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Requiem for a recorder'

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan's Political Turmoil: Can Imran Khan's PTI Party Depose the Government?

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan's Political Turmoil: Can Imran Khan's PTI Party Depose the Government? (part 2)

Read more

  • Two US Ebola patients leave hospital ‘virus-free’

    Read more

  • Turkey’s Erdogan names foreign minister Davutoglu as next PM

    Read more

  • US reaches historic $16.7bn settlement with Bank of America

    Read more

  • Special report: Supplying Ukraine’s soldiers on the front line

    Read more

  • US forces tried to rescue slain reporter from IS captors

    Read more

  • Israeli air strike kills three top Hamas commanders

    Read more

  • France delivered arms to Syrian rebels, Hollande confirms

    Read more

  • Tensions high in Yemen as Shiite rebel deadline looms

    Read more

  • Interactive: Relive the Liberation of Paris in WWII

    Read more

  • French village rallies behind besieged elderly British couple

    Read more

  • Former Irish PM Albert Reynolds dies at 81

    Read more

  • Former Femen activist detained after fighting veiled woman

    Read more

  • Thailand coup leader Prayuth Chan-ocha voted prime minister

    Read more

  • Brazil’s Silva launches bid after Campos plane crash death

    Read more

  • Brutal IS beheading video sparks social media pushback

    Read more

  • US attorney general visits Missouri town after fatal shooting

    Read more

Sport

Mali reach semis as hosts Gabon crash out on penalties

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-02-05

The Panthers of Gabon bowed out of the Africa Cup of Nations on Sunday after losing in a penalty shoot-out against the Eagles of Mali, who will face tournament heavyweights Ivory Coast in the semi-finals.

AFP - Mali beat Gabon 5-4 on penalties here Sunday after this finely balanced Africa Cup of Nations quarter-final ended 1-1 following extra time.

Barcelona star Seydou Keita converted the decisive spot kick after the co-hosts' top striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang watched in disbelief as Mali keeper Soumaila Diakite saved his effort.

The Eagles' reward is a semi-final date with Ivory Coast back at Libreville's L'Amitie stadium on Wednesday.

For Gabon, who were unbeaten in the first round, this was a cruel end to their campaign, reviving as it did memories of their defeat on penalties to Tunisia in their only other quarter-final appearance in 1996.

Gabon's attempted charge into the last four was spearheaded by the 2012 Nations Cup joint top scorer Aubameyang and Daniel Cousin, the captain, retaining his place.

Mali welcomed back midfielder Samba Diakite from suspension, with Garre Dembele dropping to the bench, and keeper Diakite coming on for Oumar Sissoko.

Among the crowd were the Gabon president and his First Lady sporting as usual the Panthers' yellow shirt.

The Panthers, displaying their customary zest and endeavour, were showing good early pace down the wings, especially Eric Mouloungui on the right, with the ever dangerous presence of Cousin waiting to pounce in the Mali box.

Aubameyang had the first gilt-edged chance appproaching the half hour, beating the offside trap to flick the ball past Soumaila Diakite only to see his effort hit the far post.

As the first half wore on Gabon began to look the more dangerous - the Mali keeper did well to keep tabs on Mouloungui's menacing low 25m freekick in the 42nd minute.

Gabon got the goal they deserved in the 55th minute when Aubameyang raced onto a high ball from the left, his back pass across the box falling to Mouloungui to slam past Diakite.

That was the Nice forward with the mohican haircut's fifth and most important international goal.

Seconds later down at the other end Didier Ovono Ebang's gloves punched away Mali striker Modibo Maiga's attempt at an equaliser.

As the game exploded Cousin almost bagged Gabon's second on 58 minutes, the unmarked former Hull City forward's shot skimming past Diakite to hit the far post.

Mali coach Alain Giresse tried to shake things up after the hour, introducing striker Mustapha Yatabare for Abdou Traore, and shortly after Rohr surprisingly replaced captain Cousin with Fabrice Do Marcolino.

Mali were fighting for their Nations Cup existence and with six minutes left in regulation time Diabate levelled not long after entering the fray in place of Samba Sow, the Bordeaux striker turning to shrug off his markers in the box and leaving Ovono with little chance.

Rohr knows Diabete only too well, having signed him during his days as coach of Ajaccio.

The two sides were still deadlocked after extra time - Keita shot high in the last seconds - and Algerian referee Haimoudi Djameil pointed to the spot for the nerve jingling climax.

After Diakite had saved Aubameyang's kick it was left to Keita to step up and coolly slot home Mali's fifth to send the Eagles' spirits soaring while the Gabon team rushed to console a tearful Aubameyang.
 

Date created : 2012-02-05

  • ACN 2012

    Africa Cup Fever - All the latest news from the Cup of Nations

    Read more

  • AFRICA CUP OF NATIONS 2012

    Zambia rout Sudan to reach Africa Cup semi-finals

    Read more

  • ACN 2012

    Africa Cup Fever - Tunisia through after beating Niger

    Read more

COMMENT(S)