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Rediff News  All News  » Sports » African Nations Cup: Egypt in last eight

African Nations Cup: Egypt in last eight

January 17, 2010 11:08 IST

Egypt continued their quest for an unprecedented third straight African Nations Cup when they reached the quarter-finals on Saturday with a 2-0 win over Mozambique as Nigeria revived their hopes of progressing.

The win left six times champions Egypt top of Group C with six points from two games as second-placed Nigeria looked set to join them into the last eight after scraping past Benin 1-0.

Egypt, now unbeaten in a record 15 matches at the Nations Cup, went ahead in the 46th minute with a Dario Khan own goal.

Mohamed Nagui made sure of the points when he scored with 10 minutes left as Egypt joined Ivory Coast in the quarter-finals of the biennial African football extravaganza.

Nigeria, who lost 3-1 to Egypt in their opening game, boosted their hopes of reaching the last eight with a barely deserved win over Benin that put them on three points.

Benin and Mozambique have one point each.

Egypt made sure they will top the group and stay in Benguela to play their quarter-final.

Nigeria striker Yakubu Aiyegbeni's first half penalty, after a handball by Romuald Boco, was just enough to secure all three points and ease the pressure on coach Shaibu Amodu.

Benin piled on the pressure but did not take their chances, twice hitting the woodwork in a lively encounter in Benguela.

"We expected a tough game but this has helped to build our confidence," said Amodu. "The good side is that we showed our experience. We had to be cautious and guard against any mistakes because they were capable of punishing us."

The Squirrels will have to make do without the inspirational Stephane Sessegnon in their decider against Egypt after the Benin midfielder picked up his second yellow card in two games.

The action shifts to Lubango on Sunday with Cameroon looking to bounce back from an opening defeat when they face Zambia (1830) while Tunisia take on Group D leaders Gabon (1600).

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