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Senegal beat Egypt on penalties to win first AFCON

WATCH: Édouard Mendy and Sadio Mane the heroes as Senegal beat Egypt on penalties to win first-ever AFCON title

February 6, 2022 By Emmanuel K. Budu-Annor
The Lions of Teranga made history by winning their first-ever continental trophy.

After finishing the last edition of the Africa Cup of Nations as runners-up, Senegal have finally won the tournament for the first time in their history, thanks to the heroics of goalkeeper Édouard Mendy and talisman Sadio Mane. The fate of the Lions of Teranga ultimately fell in the hands of the pair, with the former making a decisive save before the latter secured the win over Egypt by scoring the final penalty of the shootout.

The script could have been different had Mane been more efficient when a penalty decision went in favor of Aliou Cisse's men just three minutes into the encounter. The 29-year-old attacker saw his effort being saved by Egypt's second-choice goalkeeper Gabaski who had a memorable spell at the tournament since taking over from the injured Mohamed El-Shenawy.

A thrilling 113 minutes of football unfolded after Mane's miss, although efforts from both sides to clinch a game-winner yielded nothing. Ultimately, the game had to be decided via a shootout and, after Kalidou Koulibaly, Zizo and Abdou Diallo found the back of the net with their respective attempts, Mohamed Abdelmounem - who had given away the in-game spot-kick by fouling Ciss - hit the post to put Egypt on the back foot.

However, goalkeeper Gabaski turned up big and rescued his side once more, saving Bouna Sarr's subsequent kick before Marwan Hamdy tied the score at 2-2. Dieng then fired Senegal back in front and Eduard Mendy ensured that Sadio Mane's kick would clinch them their first-ever Cup of Nations trophy by saving Mohanad Lasheen's attempt.

The Chelsea goalkeeper added to his personal trophy cabinet by being adjudged the Goalkeeper of the Tournament before Sadio Mane was also named as the Player of the Tournament. Cameroon striker Mohamed Aboubakar showed up to pick his Golden Boot award for being the tournament's topscorer with eight goals.

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