Senegal and Algeria shared the spoils in an exciting 2-2 draw at the Stade de Franceville in the final game of Africa Cup of Nations Group B on Monday night.
- Senegal 2 Algeria 2
- Senegal unbeaten and top Group B
- Algeria exit the tournament winless
- Slimani brace cancelled out by Diop and Sow
- Senegal play Cameroon in the quarter-finals
Islam Slimani scored in either half, but his brace was cancelled out by goals from Papakouli Diop and Moussa Sow in the 43rd and 52nd minute respectively.
The draw means that the Desert Foxes crash out of the tournament as they failed to win a single game in Gabon after also losing to Tunisia and drawing against Zimbabwe.
Senegal were the first team to qualify for the knock-out stages and will look to go one better than their best ever finish, runners-up in 2002 and be crowned AFCON champions. First they will have to overcome the Indomitable Lions who lie in wait in the next round.
Algeria knew that they needed nothing less than a win and began the game the brighter of the two sides.
It didn't take long for the North Africans to take the lead against a side with ten changes in it from their last match against Zimbabwe.
Sofiane Hanni broke down the left-wing and split the keeper and Senegalese defense to pick out Slimani at the far post. The Leicester City striker instinctively side footed the ball into the roof of the net to give his team the early advantage.
In the 22nd minute Senegal came close to an equaliser. Moussa Konate threaded a ball through to Sow but he was thwarted by goal keeper, Malik Asselah who was quick off his line.
The Teranga Lions were back into the game two minutes before the break. Ismaila Sarr made a tenacious run to the byline and his eventual cross was cleared poorly by Aissa Mandy to the edge of the box. A late arriving Diop then picked up the loose ball and volleyed the ball home.
George Leekens' team went back in front in the 52nd minute. Slimani completed his brace when he was expertly found by his club team mate Riyadh Mahrez and although he scuffed his shot, it found a way to cross the line.
Aliou Cisse's team equalized just a minute later in a clear example of just how badly organised the Algerians have been at the tournament. Sow fired home from outside the box as the ball fell to him following a slide tackle on Sarr. The Fenerbache man picked his spot and struck a low shot into the back of the net.
Algeria must pack their bags, Africa's top ranked team meanwhile are starting to gain serious momentum.