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AFCON 2017: Senegal through, Tunisia beat fancied Algeria

Senegal swatted aside Zimbabwe to reach the last eight of the African Nations Cup. Earlier, a strong second half display from Tunisia sealed a 2-1 win and left Algeria on the brink of an early exit.

Senegal 2-0 Zimbabwe

(Mane 9', Saivet 14')

Senegal became the first team to qualify for the African Nations Cup quarterfinals after a dominant 2-0 victory over Zimbabwe.

Liverpool winger Sadio Mane grabbed the first from inside the box and Henri Saivet soon doubled their advantage with a stunning free kick as they also wrapped up top spot.

Having already dealt with Tunisia in their Group B opener, when Mane also scored, Senegal marched effortlessly into the knockout stages in Gabon and look the most in-form side so far. 

Senegal have surprisingly never won this biennial tournament but their odds this time have come tumbling down and they are now 9/4 favorites with some bookmakers.

Their only weakness on Thursday was their failure to put away even more of the clearcut chances they created.

Algeria 1-2 Tunisia                                                                                              

(Hanni 90+1'; Mandi 50' og, Sliti 66' pen)   

Tunisia revived their African Nations Cup campaign by stunning north African rivals Algeria, who have still to win a match at the tournament in Gabon.

The Tunisians lost their opener to Senegal but grew into their second encounter in Franceville and took the lead on 50 minutes.

Fußball Africa Cup - Algerien vs. Tunesien (Getty Images/AFP/K. Desouki)

Algeria concede an unlucky opener

A cross from Youssef Msakni was deflected into the net by Algeria's Aissa Mandi. 

It was soon 2-0 after Wahbi Khazri was fouled in the area by Faouzi Ghoulam and Naim Sliti converted from the spot. Sofiane Hanni's injury time strike was not even a consolation for Algeria.

Georges Leekens' side, who drew their Group B opener with underdogs Zimbabwe, are arguably a bigger force than 2004 champions Tunisia in this tournament with the likes of Leicester City duo Riyad Mahrez and Islam Slimani and Schalke's Nabil Bentaleb pulling the strings.

But the team as a whole have failed to sufficiently impose themselves in Gabon and boast just one point, with the group decider against Senegal on Monday now crucial to their chances of knockout stage progression.

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