AFCON 2021: 'Out with Pride' - Comoros exit AFCON after valiant display in 2 - 1 loss to Cameroon

Comoros did not go down without a fight as Cameroon progress to the quarterfinals with a 2-1 victory over the competition debutants

Ajaccio left-back Chaker Alhadhur went in goal for Comoros against Cameroon due to a goalkeeper crisis (Twitter/CAF)

Cameroon booked their place in the quarterfinals of the ongoing Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) with a 2-1 victory over Comoros on Monday night.

The tiny island nation of Comoros were valiant in their attempt to be competitive and gave a good account of themselves despite an early red card and an earlier-stated defensive crisis.

Vincent Aboubakar was again the tip of the spear for the Indomitable Lions as the Al-Nassr striker scored one and assisted another to take his goal involvement to seven in this competition (six goals and one assist).

The Coelacanths fielded Ajaccio left-back Chaker Alhadhur in goal with injury and positive Covid-19 results forcing their 1st, 2nd, and 3rd choice goalkeepers out of the encounter.

To complicate matters for the Younes Zerdouk-led (standing in for the Comoros coach Amir Abdou) side, Nadjim Abdou got a red card in the 7th minute, forcing the AFCON debutants to play practically the whole game with a man short.

Comoros kept the hosts at bay till the 29th minute when Karl Toko Ekambi opened the scoring from an Aboubakar assist.

The second half was dominated by the Cameroonians and Alhadhur as the makeshift goalkeeper put up some impressive saves to deny the five-time champions.

The pick of the bunch was a double save in the 53rd minute from Ekambi and Aboubakar, after which chest bumps and fist bumps were rightly thrown at the Ajaccio defender-cum-goalkeeper.

Inevitably, Aboubakar scored his sixth goal of the tournament in the 69th minute, applying a cool finish to a defence-splitting pass from Martin Hongla.

Then came a moment of real quality from the Islanders as Youssouf M'Changama scored unarguably the goal of the tournament so far with a rasping 30-yard free-kick that nestled in the top corner of Andre Onana's goal.

The Comorians pushed for a late equaliser but the odds proved insurmountable for the AFCON debutants as they exited the competition but with their heads held high.

The Indomitable Lions will go on to face the Gambia in the last 8 of the competition with a 10th semi-final outing up for grabs against an overachieving Gambia side.

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