AFCON2021: Ali Sangare's late howler denies Cote d'Ivoire

A goalkeeping error allowed the Leone Stars snatch a point at the dead

Sierra Leone celebrates

Cote d'Ivoire was denied a chance to qualify for the knockout round of the Africa Cup of Nations, AFCON2021, following a dramatic 2-2 draw with Sierra Leone on Sunday.

Alhaji Kamara was the hero for the Sierra Leoneans after his stoppage time leveler to earn the Leone Stars another point in Group E.

Sebastian Haller gave the Elephants a 1-0 lead in the first half, before Musa Kamara equalised in the second with stunning left-footed effort. N

Nicolas Pepe restored Ivory Coast's lead moments later but a goalkeeping mistake from the Ivorian goalkeeper, Bandra Ali Sangare, allowed Kamara to score a dramatic late equaliser.

Ivory Coast miss the chance to qualify for the knockout stages with a game to spare but the Elephants remain top of the table on four points.

Sierra Leone move up to second after two draws in their opening two matches.

A share of the spoils for the Leone Stars, who took the game to the Ivorians in Douala in the Group E encounter.

It was the second meeting between the two nations in the Cup of Nations, Ivory Coast started on the front foot as they looked to complete a third consecutive win in the group stages of the competition for the first time since 2013.

Sierra Leone, who was looking for their first win in six matches, found themselves under pressure as the Ivorians, led by Wilfred Zaha, searched for an early goal.

The first big chance arrived in the 9th minute when the referee finally awarded penalty to Zaha and CIV, moments after waving aside a penalty appeal.

AC Milan man, Franck Kessie, stepped up to take the resultant penalty but was denied by the excellent youngster, Mohamed Kamara, who parried his effort to safety.

In the 24th minute, Ivory Coast found the breakthrough as Zaha threaded an excellent through ball to Haller, who made no mistakes to put the Elephants in front.

The CIV came close to adding to the score line through Kessie and Pepe but it remained 1-0 at the break.

In the second half, the Ivorians started as the ended the first, on the front foot. But against the run of play, Sierra Leone equalised through a ferocious left-footed effort from Musa Kamara 10 minutes after the restart.

Pepe will restore their lead in the 66th minute with another left-footed attempt that left goalkeeper, Kamara, with no chance.

The Elephants held on till the stoppage time when an defensive header from Serge Aurier was slipped by his goalkeeper, Sangare, with the loose ball falling kindly to Steven Caulker, whose pass found Kamara to tuck home the equaliser.

A share of the spoils in the end for the two nations.

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