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2023 AFCON Qualifying: Mali turn on the flair in thrashing of South Sudan; Burkina Faso draw Eswatini

An impressive attacking performance from Mali on Friday saw Les Aigles finish their 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign with five wins from six matches following a 4-0 defeat of South Sudan in Bamako. Kamory Doumbia scored twice with goals from Ibrahima Koné and Nene Dorgeles for the hosts who already had qualification secured before Friday’s closing match. South Sudan conclude their campaign in last place with three points from six matches.

Mali are a fearsome team when playing in front of their vocal supporters in Bamako and began to overwhelm the visitors from South Sudan immediately. Following a couple of excellent saves from South Sudan goalkeeper Majak Mawith, Koné opened the scoring in the tenth minute from close range after controlling a pass from Aliou Dieng.

Dorgeles came on for the injured Adama Traoré in the 28th minute and made an instant impact. The talented Red Bull Salzburg winger displayed his skill with the ball a minute later and to the end line before crossing for Doumbia to finish low past Mawith.

Proficiency on the wings contributed to Mali’s third goal in the 57th minute when left back Amadou Dante crossed for Doumbia to finish with an accurate first time shot. However the best moment arrived late for the supporters in Bamako who cheered with delight after Yves Bissouma played a quick combination pass and displayed nifty moves to avoid Mawith and cross for Dorgeles to score.

Simultaneously, Burkina Faso finished up their qualification campaign in disappointing fashion with a 0-0 draw against last placed Eswatini in Group B. The Stallions, hosting the match in Morocco, dominated but ran into a stubborn Swazi defense that managed to hold out against the favorites. Burkina Faso are qualified for the AFCON finals in Ivory Coast but may miss out on winning Group B if Cape Verde win at Togo on Sunday.

Highlights from Mali’s victory are below.

Scores

Group B

Burkina Faso 0-0 Eswatini

Group G

Mali 4-0 South Sudan

Highlights

Mali 4-0 South Sudan

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