25 January 2013

South Africa/Congo-Kinshasa: Group B On Knife Edge As Niger, DRC Draw

Pretoria — The goal-less draw between Niger and the Democratic Republic of Congo in their Group B Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) clash on Thursday night did neither of the sides a favour.

It has also put Group B on knife edge ahead of the final group stages next week.

Both teams went to the game, played at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth, desperate for three points to keep their hopes of progressing in the tournament alive. It was their first ever Afcon meeting.

The draw brought uncertainty in the group and this means all will be decided during the last group games to be played on Monday night.

The one point places Niger in third place of Group B, while the DRC is in the last spot. Ghana leads the group, followed by Mali at number two.

But the draw presented a historic moment for Niger as it registered its first ever point in the continental showpiece.

Throughout the 90 minutes of the game on Thursday, the DRC were certainly not looking like the favourites that they were touted as ahead of the encounter. Instead, a well-organised Niger side dominated the game throughout and gave the Congolese a tough run for their money.

Several mistakes in front of goals, coupled with poor passes, led to both sides struggling to find the back of the net.

Group B's last matches in the first round will see Niger taking on the Black Stars of Ghana in Port Elizabeth while the DRC will square off with Mali at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.

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