Dar es Salaam. Tanzania’s national football team Taifa Stars recorded a 1-0 victory against Libya in the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) formality match at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium in Dar yesterday.
Taifa Stars’ goal was scored by Simon Msuva at the end of first half following a pass from Nickson Kibabage. However, Taifa Stars victory does not change the Group J standings. The Group is led by Tunisia who won 2-1 against Equatorial Guinea in Tunis, a match that was also played yesterday.
Taifa Stars finished third, with seven points, while Tunisia maintained their unbeaten run with 16 points - and is followed by Equatorial Guinea, with nine points.
Libya finished at the bottom with three points collected by beating Taifa Stars 2-1 in Tunis.
Taifa Stars played well in the encounter, and could have scored many goals in the first 35 minutes of the game. But its strikers, led by captain Mbwana Samatta, missed clear scoring chances. The clearest scoring chance was in the 34th - but Msuva’s shot went wide even with Libya’s goalkeeper, Al Wuheeshi, out of position. Another chance was wasted by Mbwana Samatta whose shot was saved by Al Wuheeshi, resulting in a futile corner kick by the Tanzanians.
The 2nd half was dominated by Libya, who created many scoring chances. But Taifa Stars’ ‘keeper Aishi Manula was hero of the day for saving the team from many goals.
Meanwhile, two-time African champions Côte d’Ivoire beat Niger 3-0 in Niamey on Friday to book a ticket to next year’s Total Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) in Cameroon.
Defender Serge Aurier put up superb display, scoring a goal and assisting two as the Elephants trampled Niger under, whose dream of qualification was extinguished as they are bottom of Group K, with three points.