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Africa Cup of Nations: Cameroon and Benin through after goalless draw


Benin supporters

The Benin supporters were out in full force in Ismaila

Defending champions Cameroon and Benin played out a goalless draw, allowing both sides to progress into the last 16 of the Africa Cup of Nations.

The result means Cameroon finished second in Group F to set up a tasty meeting with Nigeria.

Benin went through as one of the four best third-placed teams and will come up against Morocco.

Cameroon came closest to scoring but both Ambroise Oyongo and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting saw their efforts saved.

Goalkeeper Saturnin Allagbe dived full length to his right to make two stunning fingertip saves in the opening period.

Benin’s best chance fell to Stephane Sessegnon, but the former Sunderland and West Brom midfielder struck a free-kick narrowly wide.

Ghana beat Guinea-Bissau 2-0 and will face the second-placed team from Group E. The final group games take place later on Tuesday with Mali already going through, while Tunisia, Angola and Mauritania all still in contention to progress.


BBC World Service Sport’s Ben Sutherland

At the final whistle, Benin’s players sank to their knees and kissed the ground in celebration – while the referee looked to the skies, possibly to thank any passing deity that it was all over.

Benin came with one gameplan – do not let them score. That was it. And they did it, though they got a little nervy towards the end.

Benin’s fans – especially the small army of brass-playing, yellow-shirted band members who danced for the full 90 minutes – were the best thing about the game; undeniably the most entertaining thing in the stadium.

This was a game in which Cameroon just knew they were better than Benin – but since they knew they were guaranteed group-toppers anyway, they just couldn’t quite find the will to summon up the extra effort to put them away. We’ve all been there.

It does now mean though that their second round clash is with their fierce rivals Nigeria. It’s a shame that one of them will go home early – but at least there is a massive tie now to make that new second round stage come alive.

Cameroon are managed by Clarence Seedorf (left) with former Netherlands international team-mate Patrick Kluivert his assistant

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