Kigali (Rwanda), Feb 8: The Democratic Republic of Congo won the 2016 Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) after beating Mali football team 3-0 here. Coach Florent Ibenge’s team humbled Mali in the final at the Amahoro Stadium here on Sunday, reports Xinhua.
After 28 minutes, Mechak Elia gave Congo the lead on the wet ground, as it was raining, with a long shot that beat Mali goalkeeper Djigui Diarra. Mali could have levelled after 34 minutes when Aboulaye Diarra with a one-on-one situation failed to beat the Congo goalkeeper.
After taking a 1-0 lead at half time, Mali came back more determined to push forward in the second half. After 60 minutes, Mali’s Lassana Samake had his well taken shot saved by Congo goalkeeper Ley Matampi. Congo, who also won the trophy in 2009, kept pushing forward and Elia picked his second of the day after 62 minutes. The midfielder made no mistake, finishing off a Yannick Bangala cross.
Mali tried to make changes but still failed to contain the determined Congo team. Jonathan Bolingi Mpangi, one of the best players of the tournament, got his name on the scoresheet after 73 minutes with a well taken low shot. Mali later had substitute Abdoulaye Diarra and Hamidou Sinayoko miss scoring chances. It was all celebrations after the final whistle when the over 15,000 Congo fans chanted and danced in the stadium.
“This is a very sweet win because we have worked hard in this tournament and only lost one game in the group stage,” said Congo coach Ibenge. (IANS)