Mohamed Bayo scored in the stoppages to help Guinea defeat 10-man Equatorial Guinea 1-0 and book their place in the quarter-finals of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in Ivory Coast on Sunday.
In the Round of 16 fixture at the Alassane Ouattara Stadium in Abidjan, Guinea took advantage of Equatorial Guinea’s second-half missed penalty courtesy of their top talisman Emilio Nzue to score the winner in the closing stages of added minutes and join Nigeria and Angola as among the teams that have already stormed into the last eight.
Guinea started the better side and created the first chance of the game with only three minutes played when Bayo unleashed a powerful effort from a tight angle but he fired wide.
In the 11th minute, Equatorial Guinea drove into the Guinea penalty area for the first time but Salvador got it all wrong on the byline and kicked the ball straight out for a goal kick. However, Guinea continued to play some really good stuff, but it was Equatorial Guinea, who won a free-kick about 35 yards out in the 17th minute, but it did not hit the target.
In the 40th minute, an off-the-ball incident between Elo and Sylla saw the latter getting the first booking of the game for a high foul. He caught Elo with a high boot on the side of the head and things got heated between the two sets of players before they were separated.
At the start of the second period, leading scorer Emilio Nsue had a chance to put his side ahead but he blazed the ball over the bar when he should have done better. In the 56th minute, Equatorial Guinea suffered a blow when Federico Bikoro was shown a straight red card following a clumsy foul on Bayo.
Despite being a man down, Equatorial Guinea were awarded a penalty in the 64th minute after Sylla caught Salvador with a high boot. However, Nsue failed to take advantage and put his side ahead after his effort hit the outside of the post.
Equatorial Guinea XI: Owono, Akapo, Bikoro, Buyla, Coco, Ganet, Machin, Ndong, Nsue, Orozco, Salvador.
Subs: Anieboh, Asue, Balboa, Ela, Embela, Eneme, Elo, Nabil, Ondo, Sapunga, Senra, Siafa.
Guinea XI: Kone, Bayo, Camara, Diakhaby, Diakite, Diawara, Guilavogui, Jeanvier, Konate, I Sylla, S Sylla.
Subs: Camara, Camara, Cisse, Cisse, Conte, Guirassy, Kamano, Kante, Keita, Keita, Sow.