Our website use cookies to improve and personalize your experience and to display advertisements (if any). Our website may also include cookies from third parties like Google Adsense, Google Analytics, and Youtube. By using the website, you consent to the use of cookies.

Cape Verde Islands beat Mozambique to win Cup of Nations group

THE Cape Verde Islands, the smallest country competing at the Africa Cup of Nations finals, became the first to book their place in the next stage of the competition as they beat Mozambique 3-0 on Friday.

It was their second victory in Group B after a giant-killing 2-1 triumph over Ghana on Sunday and guarantees them top place and a spot in the last-16.

Former Manchester United forward Bebe fired home a free kick from some 35 metres out in the 32nd minute with captain Ryan Mendes scoring their second soon after the break at the Felix Houphouet-Boigny Stadium. Another long-range shot, this time from Kevin Pina, made it 3-0 in the 69th minute.

After two rounds of group matches at the tournament in the Ivory Coast, Cape Verde sits on six points, out of the reach of Egypt on two and Ghana and Mozambique on one each.

Advertisements

Bebe’s astonishingly powerful free kick in the 32nd minute was hit from closer to the halfway line than the Mozambican goal, swerving violently in the air and going through the hands of goalkeeper Ernan.

Bebe, now at Rayo Vallecano, served notice of his set-piece prowess with a rasping effort eight minutes earlier. It was around five metres closer than his later effort but rattled the Mozambique crossbar.

Cape Verde’s second in the 51st minute came after a horror error from Mozambique centre-back Edmilson, dispossessed in his own area when he had plenty of time to clear the ball and fired home by Mendes.

READ:  Mozambique switches focus to Privinvest in 'tuna bond' case

Pina’s goal was another breathtaking strike, from halfway inside the Mozambican half and struck with venom, giving the goalkeeper no chance.

Mozambique rarely troubled their opponents in the Lusophone derby despite their heroics of Sunday when they came within minutes of an upset win over Egypt.

They were awarded a penalty five minutes before halftime when Geny Catamo appeared to have been sandwiched between two Cape Verde defenders but it was ruled as no foul after a VAR check.

Mozambique remains without a win in their Cup of Nations history with a record of two draws and 12 losses in 14 past matches.

Cape Verde, with a population of some 600,000, complete their group against Egypt on Monday while Mozambique meet Ghana in the other group game at the same time. Both will be in Abidjan where two stadiums are being used for the 24-team tournament.

Advertisements
By MARK GLEESON

MORE FROM THIS SECTION