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AFCON U-20: Gambia thrash South Sudan to set up semifinal clash with Nigeria

The Gambia continued their perfect record at the 2023 Africa U-20 Cup of Nations in Egypt on Friday with a lopsided 5-0 quarterfinal victory over South Sudan. Adama Bojang scored a hat trick in the victory along with goals from Moses Jarju and Mahmudu Bajo, putting an end to South Sudan’s historic run and sending the Young Scorpions to the semifinals as well as their second ever appearance at the FIFA U-20 World Cup which will take place in May. Gambia will face Nigeria next in an anticipated semifinal matchup on Monday.

The difference in quality between the teams became apparent quickly as Gambia put the South Sudanese defense under heavy pressure in the opening ten minutes. Central defender and captain Alagie Saine set up the opening goal in the seventh minute when his accurate long ball sent Bojang behind for a calm finish between the legs of South Sudan goalkeeper Godwill Yogusuk.

A couple of good reaction saves from Yogusuk kept the deficit at one goal for the next twenty minutes but it began to fall apart for the Bright Stars close to the half hour mark. Saine’s center back partner Jarju was left unmarked to head in a Salifu Colley corner kick in the 28th minute before Bojang added his second goal five minutes later with an easy tap-in from Kajally Drammeh’s low cross.

It took just over sixty seconds into the second half before Gambia added their fourth through Bojang, who completed his hat-trick with an easy finish after Yogusuk came out of his box and failed to reach a probing pass over the top of his defense. Bajo completed the scoring in the 71st minute when Alieu Gibba played a short free kick from the left wing to the edge of the penalty area where Muhamed Sawaneh’s low shot was redirected into the goal by Bajo.

Highlights are below.

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