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AFCON 2023: Bounedjah salvages draw for Algeria against Burkina Faso

By primenewsghana
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Baghdad Bounedjah's equaliser deep into injury-time secured a draw for Algeria, denying Burkina Faso a second straight victory in the African Cup of Nations.

It appeared Bertrand Traore's second-half penalty had Algeria in real danger of a first-round exit from the tournament until the dramatic ending when Adam Ounas set up Bounedjah to score his second of the match.

Algeria came into the match the favourites and had more of the play, but Burkina Faso looked dangerous on the break throughout and would not have been flattered by victory.

The opening goal came just before half time and it was a brilliant one as Abdoul Fessal Tapsoba clipped an inch-perfect diagonal ball behind the Algerian defence which Mohamed Konate met with a header that crashed into the roof of the net. Initially it was ruled offside but VAR showed the striker to be just on.

Algeria came out in the second half with added purpose and were level after six minutes when half-time substitute Youcef Belaili's half-blocked free kick eventually found its way to Baghdad Bounedjah, who coolly netted from close range.

Once more a VAR decision found in favour of the underdogs as Issa Kabore went down under the challenge of Rayan Ait-Nouri and after reviewing the sideline video, the referee awarded a spot-kick.

Substitute Traore, who came on for Konate after he received a booking, sent the goalkeeper the wrong way from the spot and it appeared more likely they would add another as Algeria brought off stars Youcef Belaili and Riyad Mahrez - the latter who was anonymous throughout.

But Bounedjah, the tournament's top scorer with three goals, ensured Algeria are well-placed to reach the last 16 with a victory over Mauritania in their last group match.

Algeria have a solitary point from two games after drawing their first match with Angola.