Guinea defeated West African rivals Mali 1-0 to secure qualification for the Africa Cup of Nations slated for Cameroon.
Mali had already secured qualification before the matchday with 12 points from five matches played but Guinea needed three points from their last two games to pull clear and deny Namibia.
Chad, the fourth team in the group, had already been disqualified by CAF due to the political involvement of the Chadian government in football after the Chadian Sports Ministry dissolved the Chadian FA.
The ban on Chad complicated the qualification race in group A although CAF awarded 3-0 wins to Namibia and Mali, Chad’s opponents on matchday 5 and 6, with both matches canceled.
After a goalless first half, Partizan midfielder Seydouba Soumah scored the winning goal for Guinea in the 75th minute of the game.
Guinea held on to secure their qualification for their second AFCON in a row. Meanwhile, the result means their last group game against Namibia gives them a chance to finish the qualifiers as group winners permitted that the team beats Namibia away from home.
Also, Burkina Faso secured their qualification after a 0-0 draw away in Uganda. The Burkinabe needed to avoid a defeat to ensure qualification.
However, the 2013 finalists are not assured the top spot yet but Uganda, as well as Malawi, stands a chance. Only one of the two can qualify as they face each other in the last group game while Burkina Faso will play the group’s whipping boys South Sudan in the last group game.
In other matches, Ethiopia thrashed Madagascar 4-0, Rwanda popped Mozambique by a single goal whole Sudan defeated Sao Tome and Principe 2-0.
On Thursday, Togo and Comoros will play while Botswana and Zimbabwe will battle, South Africa will play Ghana, Libya and Tunisia will also tackle while Egypt will play Kenya as well as Zambia hosting Algeria.
Written by: Daniel Ademiju Idowu