Algeria score early to beat Senegal 1-0 and lift their second African Cup of Nations.

Algeria scored early to beat Senegal 1-0 and lift their second African Cup of Nations on Friday evening. They netted with their first attack in Cairo as Baghdad Bounedjah cut in from the left and hit a shot that was deflected in. Senegal thought they’d won a second-half penalty but the referee changed his mind after reviewing replays. Later their players dropped to the turf after a stoppage-time free-kick failed to beat Algeria’s defensive wall and the final whistle was blown. It meant Senegal lost in a final for a second time after also failing at this stage in 2002. Algeria, who committed 32 fouls according to official match statistics, had to scrap for their win in a match that was certainly not a classic but was tense and gripping throughout. Senegal, beaten by Cameroon on their only previous appearance in the final in 2002, were awarded a penalty for handball in the second half but the decision was revoked following a VAR review. The final whistle provoked wild celebrations among the large contingent of travelling Algeria fans. It was a fitting end to a tournament that, with 24 teams for the first time, produced plentiful drama even if quality was sometimes lacking. Senegal were missing Kalidou Koulibaly, arguably Africa’s finest defender, through suspension and his absence was quickly felt. Celebration galore Jubilant fans hit the streets across Europe, shouting “one, two, three, viva l’Algerie.” Twitter users shared videos as cities in Europe erupted in celebration.

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