Sadio Mane scored the winning penalty to secure Senegal’s first-ever Africa Cup of Nations against Egypt. Mane missed a penalty in the first half of normal time which Senegal dominated, however, Egypt grew into the game and an even match went to a shootout.
Starting fast, Saliou Ciss was taken out in the penalty box within the first five minutes, but Mane saw his penalty saved by Gabaski. Three-time beaten finalists Senegal were the better side throughout the first half, with Egypt and Mohamed Salah creating very little in the opening period.
A nervy second half saw chances at a premium but seven-time winners Egypt managed to create opportunites of their own. Marwan Hamdy Mehany saw a header fly wide and Salah constantly looked bright, but the Liverpool star had very little support and struggled to drag his team to victory.
As the game ticked into extra-time, Senegal had two chances in quick succession, with substitute Bamba Dieng rising high to head just past the post, before Abdou Diallo saw his header fly wide from the resulting corner.
The teams were inseparable and Carlos Quieroz’s men took the game to a shoot-out — despite him sitting in the stands after a red card in the semi-final. Egypt were familiar with spot-kicks, having progressed to the final with a shoot-out win over Cameroon, as indeed they did against Ivory Coast in the round of 16.
Stepping up first, Senegal captain Kalidou Koulibaly tucked his kick away before Egypt equalised. Mohamed Abdelmonem missed Egypt’s second spot-kick after Diallo had scored, only for Bouna Sarr to see his following kick saved to keep the scores level.
Abdelmonem Elsayed Mohamed Ahmed saw his spot-kick saved by Edouard Mendy, leaving Mane with the opportunity to avenge his earlier miss and win the competition for his country. His powerful penalty was far better than his earlier miss, with Salah denied the chance to take Egypt’s final spot-kick.
The win for Senegal makes it seven different countries to win the AFCON, while the two sides meet again in March for World Cup qualifiers.