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AFCON roundup: Egypt tops Ghana, clinches last quarterfinal spot

Gabon Soccer African Cup

Egypt’s Mohamed Salah, front, scores a goal during the African Cup of Nations Group D soccer match between Egypt and Ghana at the Stade de Port-Gentil, Gabon, Wednesday Jan. 25, 2017. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)


PORT-GENTIL, Gabon (AP) Egypt made sure its long-awaited return to the African Cup of Nations will last at least one more match as it clinched the last quarterfinal place with a thunderous free-kick by Mohamed Salah and a 1-0 win over Ghana on Wednesday.

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Salah’s 11th-minute goal saw Egypt take spot in Group D from the Ghanaians on the final day of group games in Gabon, eliminating Mali, which drew 1-1 with Uganda.

Egypt, the record seven-time champion, needed to win to make sure it progressed at its first African Cup in seven years. Ghana had already qualified.

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Salah’s strike was one of the goals of the tournament as he stepped up and smashed the free kick into the top left corner with Ghana goalkeeper Razak Brimah helpless.