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Algeria Beats Ivory Coast To Book Semi-Final Clash With Nigeria
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Algeria Beats Ivory Coast To Book Semi-Final Clash With Nigeria

Felix Egbomuche

Felix Egbomuche

Algeria will play in the semi-finals of the Africa Cup of Nations against Nigeria after defeating Ivory Coast 4-3 on penalty shoot-out following a 1-1 draw in Suez.

Serey Die missed the final kick in a dramatic shoot-out as the Elephants crashed out of the tournament in Egypt.

The game had finished 1-1 in regulation time and another extra thirty minutes didn't change the outcome of what was quite an exciting game.

The Ivorians started the game well and the first piece of goal mouth action fell to them when Max Gredel's shot was tipped onto the post by Algeria goalkeeper Rais M'bolhi.

Algeria soon found their groove and Manchester City winger, Riyad Mahrez could have put them in the lead but his shot whisked just wide of the right post.

The foxes, however, took the lead against the run of play through Sofiane Feghouli in the 20th minute, moments after his goalkeeper had made a crucial save to stop Gradel at the other end.

The North Africans had the opportunity to extend their lead with just a minute played in the second half when they were awarded a penalty.

But Baghdad Bounedjah's smashed the penalty against the crossbar to give the Ivorians some form of hope.

And that lifeline was duly accepted by the 2015 champions when Jonathan Kodjia's shot after he received the ball from Wilfred Zaha found its way into the bottom left corner.

From then on, the Algerians pressed for a second goal but the Ivory Coast defense stood still and dragged the game into extra-time.

In extra-time, chances fell to both attacks but non was converted as the game would eventually be decided on penalties.

All first five kicks by Remy Bensebani, Frank Kessie, Islam Slimani, Maxwell Cornet and Andy Delort were put in the back of the net.

Then Wilfred Bony stepped up to register the first miss in the shootout. The Ivorian striker tried to confuse the goalkeeper by stopping in the middle of his rup up but Rais kept his cool to make the save.

Adam Ounas and Max Gradel scored the next two kicks before Youcef Belaili struck his shot against the left post.

But it was Serey Die's miss that proved to be the most crucial action of the game as it sent his team out of the tournament while Algeria progressed to the last four.

The Foxes will now battle Nigeria on Sunday at the Cairo Stadium in Egypt for a place in the final.