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Highlights: Nicolas Pepe outshines Man City star as Algeria sent packing from AFCON

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Highlights: Nicolas Pepe outshines Man City star as Algeria sent packing from AFCON

 

Arsenal outcast Nicolas Pepe proved the star of the show on Thursday, as Cote d’Ivoire showcased their AFCON title credentials en route to a comfortable win over Algeria.

The Elephants took just 22 minutes to open the game’s scoring, when a fine piece of work on the part of that man Pepe down the right flank saw the former Lille man pull back for Franck Kessie to slot home with ease:

And it was two fifteen minutes later, as, on this occasion, ex-Tottenham full-back Serge Aurier’s searching set-piece was met by the arriving Ibrahim Sangare at the back post:

There was still time for Cote d’Ivoire to add further gloss to the scoreline, though, as Pepe was rewarded for his efforts along the right with a goal of his own, cutting inside onto his favoured left foot before picking out the far corner in style:

Algeria captain and Manchester City star Riyad Mahrez, on the other hand, endured a night to forget, fluffing his lines from the penalty spot just shy of the hour mark to all but kill off any remaining hope of an unlikely comeback:

Algeria ousted/Cote d’Ivoire march on

Thursday’s result at the Douala Stadium, meanwhile, has had major repercussions when it comes to the AFCON as a whole.

This comes with Mahrez’s Algeria, the reigning tournament champions, having been ousted at the first hurdle, owing to just a solitary point secured from meetings with all of Equatorial Guinea, Sierra Leone, and, this evening, Cote d’Ivoire.

The north African outfit join Ghana as the 2nd heavyweight nation to have been sent packing from the AFCON groups, as things begin to heat up ahead of next week’s Round-of-16 fixtures.

Highlights: Nicolas Pepe outshines Man City star as Algeria sent packing from AFCON

The winner’s trophy is put on display during the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations final football match between Egypt and Cameroon at the Stade de l’Amitie Sino-Gabonaise in Libreville on February 5, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS (Photo credit should read GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP via Getty Images)

 

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Aminat Aigbe

Aminat Aigbe is the first lady of afronaija and a very good blogger ( Original Mrs AfroNaija )

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