2023 AFCON qualifiers: Sierra Leone vs Guinea Bissau – a crucial zonal derby

2023 AFCON qualifiers: Sierra Leone vs Guinea Bissau – a crucial zonal derby
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Sierra Leone Guinea Bissau

Sierra Leone will clash with Guinea Bissau on Monday in an important match in the second matchday of Group A of the qualifiers for the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.

Defeated 2-1 by Nigeria, the Leone Stars need to revive their campaign against the Djurtus who made light work of Sao Tome and Principe with a 5-1 win.

In this very interesting group, where the search for the top two slots would be very tight, Sierra Leone, which returned to the final phase of the AFCON in 2021 after an absence that lasted 25 years, has no room for error on Monday.

In Cameroon, despite their elimination in the first round, Sierra Leone had left a good impression hinged on being able to hold two big sides of African football, Algeria (0-0) and Côte d’Ivoire (2-2).

Narrowly missing qualification in the second round after a 1-0 defeat against Equatorial Guinea, the Leone Stars must avoid moving away from the elite of African football and that means qualifying for the AFCON next year scheduled for Cote d’Ivoire.

And that is why it is necessary to gain the points against Guinea Bissau, which has become a regular in the final stages of the AFCON since 2017 after taking part in the last three editions.

As Nigeria are the favourites to win Group A, the battle between the two teams which has been scheduled at the General Lansana Conté Conakry Stadium in Guinea will be epic.

Asked at the end of the game they lost 2-1 against Nigeria, Sierra Leone striker Jonathan Worsay was delighted to have scored but frustrated it counted for nothing.

“We are not happy with the outcome of the game but we showed great things that we must repeat against Guinea Bissau,” said the striker playing in Greece for Panetolikos.

Guinea Bissau squad arrived in the Guinean capital of Conakry on Saturday, the goalkeeper of Djurtus, Manuel Balde says he is confident.

“Our victory against Sao Tome was a very good thing but we have to keep working because Monday we will have a difficult match,” said the Bissau-Guinean goalkeeper playing in Portugal.

In the other Group A match, Sao Tome will play against the ogre of the group, Nigeria, who started their campaign with a 2-1 victory.

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