Lesotho stun Zimbabwe, Mozambique edge Somalia in 2026 World Cup qualifiers


Lesotho secured an important 2-0 away victory over Zimbabwe on Friday afternoon to go top of Group C of Africa's 2026 World Cup qualifiers.

Mozambique and Kenya were also in action in Friday's early group of Matchday 3 games with the sides keen on bolstering their chances of qualifying for the global tournament.

But it was in Group C where Lesotho pulled off the stunning victory over Zimbabwe at the Johannesburg Stadium in South Africa. 

Rethabile Rasethuntsa opened the scoring for Lesotho in the 21st minute, giving them an early lead. 

Jane Thaba Ntso then doubled their advantage just ten minutes later, putting the game beyond Zimbabwe's reach. 

With this impressive win, Lesotho now sit atop Group C with five points from three matches, while Zimbabwe languish at the bottom with just two points.

The other Group C match between Nigeria and South Africa is set to take place later on Friday in Uyo, with both teams looking to make up ground on the group leaders.

Meanwhile, in Group G, Mozambique secured a hard-fought 2-1 win over Somalia in Maputo. Alfons Amade put the hosts ahead in the 14th minute, and Stanley Ratifo extended their lead in the 29th minute. 

Somalia managed to pull one back through Ismail Shirwa in the 66th minute, but it proved to be a mere consolation as Mozambique held on for the victory. 

This result sees Mozambique move level on six points with group leaders Algeria and Guinea, who have also played three matches. 

Somalia, on the other hand, remain at the foot of the table with no points.

In Group F, Kenya and Burundi played out a 1-1 draw in a closely contested match held in Lilongwe, Malawi. 

Duke Abuya gave Kenya the lead in the 72nd minute, but their joy was short-lived as Abdallah Sudi equalized for Burundi just 13 minutes later.

The draw leaves Kenya in third place with four points, just ahead of Burundi on goal difference.

As the qualifying campaign continues, Fridayt's results will have a significant impact on the standings and the hopes of each nation to secure a spot at the 2026 World Cup.