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WAFCON Group A: Morocco defeat Senegal to advance as group winners; Burkina Faso and Uganda eliminated following draw

Group A finished up at the 2022 Africa Women Cup of Nations with matchups between hosts Morocco and Senegal as well as Burkina Faso and Uganda. Morocco defeated Senegal 1-0 to advance to the quarterfinals as group winners courtesy of a penalty kick goal from Ghizlane Chebbak but Senegal advanced also as Group A runners-up. Burkina Faso and Uganda played to an entertaining 2-2 draw but in the end the result means that both teams are eliminated with only one point each.

Morocco generally controlled play in their match against Senegal with midfielder Fatima Tagnaout an influential force. Tagnaout created two excellent looks in the first half with precise crosses but Yasmin Mrabet headed wide in the 11th minute before Rosella Ayane got her header all wrong after Tagnaout’s cross set up a wide open look from close range.

The Atlas Lionesses continued to dominate play after halftime and were rewarded with good fortune five minutes into the second half. A cross from Chebbak went off the hand of Senegal defender Salimata Ndiaye in her penalty area and the Video Assistant Referee gave a penalty kick to Morocco, which Chebbak fired in past goalkeeper Ndeye Diaw for the winning goal.

Burkina Faso and Uganda played a thrilling and entertaining match simultaneously but neither team were rewarded with a quarterfinal spot in the end. A wild first half saw all four goals scored with the opener arriving for Uganda’s Crested Cranes in the 8th minute when Margret Kunihira received a quick switch of play from Nalugya Shamirah and rolled a low shot past Burkinabé keeper Mariam Ouattara. Burkina Faso were further disadvantaged after defender Madinatou Rouamba was given a straight red card for taking down Uganda’s Fauzia Najjemba as the last defender.

Les Étalons were not deterred however and an incredible individual effort from midfielder Adama Congo leveled the match in the 35th minute by collecting the ball in midfield and dribbling by three Crested Cranes before calmly finishing past keeper Daisy Nakaziro. A few minutes later Uganda took the lead again when Sandra Nabweteme’s low show snuck under Ouattara but soon before halftime Burkina Faso wrapped up a phenomenal first half by leveling when Nakaziro spilled a Balkissa Sawadogo cross and the ball ricocheted into the goal off Adèle Kabré. Uganda failed to get past admirable Burkinabé defending in the second half and nearly suffered defeat when their high defensive line was exploited late on but Limata Nikiéma rolled her shot wide with only Nakaziro to beat.

Highlights from both games are below.

Morocco 1-0 Senegal

Burkina Faso 2-2 Uganda

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