On Wednesday, Namibia secured a spot in the Africa Cup of Nations last 16 for the first time after a goalless draw against Group E winners Mali in San Pedro. As one of the top four third-placed teams, the Brave Warriors will face Angola on Saturday for a chance to advance to the quarter-finals. Mali claimed the top spot in the group with five points, edging out South Africa and Namibia by one point, while Tunisia was eliminated after a goalless draw in the group’s other match in Korhogo.
Mali is set to face Burkina Faso on January 30 in the last-16 stage.
Namibia secured its first-ever AFCON win with a surprising 1-0 victory over Tunisia in the opening game. However, a 4-0 defeat by South Africa put them in a position where they needed a point in their final group match to secure a spot in the knockout phase.
In the 16th minute, Prins Tjiueza nearly gave Namibia the lead, but Mali goalkeeper Djigui Diarra tipped his shot onto the post and saved Peter Shalulile’s follow-up attempt. Namibia’s Lloyd Kazapua made a crucial stop from Fousseni Diabate’s strong strike, and Lassine Sinayoko, who previously scored against South Africa and Tunisia, missed a close-range header.
Despite few clear chances, Namibia held on, with Amadou Dante’s late free-kick being turned behind by Kazapua, ensuring their qualification to the next round alongside their already-qualified opponents.
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