South Sudan and Sao Tome picked vital first leg wins in the preliminary round of qualifying matches for the Total African Cup of Nations, Cameroon 2021 on Wednesday. While South Sudan came from a goal down to win 2-1 at home against Seychelles, Sao Tome e Principe were in destructive form, winning 3-1 away to Mauritius.
Sao Tome will now just need any kind of a draw in the return tie at home in four days’ time to book themselves a slot in the group stages of the qualifiers. South Sudan meanwhile will have all to play for against the Seychelles, but they can also proceed by avoiding defeat in the return fixture.
Playing in Omdurman as their home ground in Juba was unavailable, the Bright Stars had to come from a goal down. They found themselves trailing after just 13 minutes when Nigel Hoareau sneaked between two defenders before striking a venomous left foot shot from range that found keeper Majak Mawith napping.
But, South Sudan got themselves back on level terms eight minutes later via Koang Thor Kejok. The midfielder beautifully chested down Dominic Angelo Aroma’s freekick before turning and rifling a volley past keeper Ah-Kong Ian, the ball bouncing on the underside of the bar before going into the net.
The home side were hugely offensive and save for the goal they conceded, they pushed Seychelles into their own half, forcing them to defend deep.
They scored the second and what would be the winner a minute to half time off a swiftly executed counter attack when Joseph Kuch Nyuar simply tapped into the net after running into a cross from the left.
Despite getting more chances in the second half, South Sudan could not increase the tally and will have all to do in the return tie.
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09.10.2019 Omdurman South Sudan 2-1 Seychelles
09.10.2019 Belle Vue Mauritius 1-3 Sao Tome e Principe
09.10.2019 Djibouti Djibouti 1-1 Gambia