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FIFA World Cup Qualifiers From Africa Roundup

A round-up of the FIFA World cup qualifiers played across the continent.

Liberia, Tanzania, Ethiopia and Equatorial Guinea are through to the second round of 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers following wins over Sierra Leone, Burundi, Lesotho and South Sudan respectively.

The Lone Stars advanced to the group stages despite a 1-0 loss to Leone Stars in a match played at Siaka Stevens Stadium in Free Town on Sunday.

18-year-old goalkeeper Ashley Williams was the hero of the night as he saved a stoppage-time penalty that ensured Liberia advance on a 3-2 aggregate.

US-based striker Kei Kamara reduced the deficit in the 55th minute with a powerful strike after fighting off his marker from a hopeful punt forward before guiding the ball past an onrushing Williams.

Umaru Bangura had a chance to finish off the game after Liberia committed a foul inside the 18-yard box but his kick was easily stopped by the teenage goalkeeper to ensure Lone Stars progress.

In Maseru, Ethiopia drew 1-1 against hosts Lesotho to advance on the away goal rule where Basotho Captain Nkau Lerotholi handed the visitors their ticket with an own goal.

Both sides had played ftoor a goalless draw in the first leg that was played on Wednesday in Bahir Dar handing Lesotho an advantage for the Sunday’s second leg but the South Africans were wasteful as they squandered numerous chances to win the game.

Tanzania edged out Burundi on penalties at the National Stadium in Dar es Salaam after a 1-1 draw away in the first leg last Wednesday.

The two East African sides could not be separated either as they were locked on 1-1(2-2 on aggregate) following extra time in Dar.

Belgium-based Mbwana Samata struck in the 29th minute when he rose above the defence to nod Mohammed Hussien’s corner beyond Burundi goalkeeper Justin Ndikumana.

The Swallows, however, fought back and equalized minutes before half-time when former Sofapaka marksman Abdul Razak Fiston razed into the box to tap in a wonderful cross from Mohammed Hamisi.

Taifa Stars keeper Juma Kaseja saved Burundi’s first spot-kick before the duo of former Premier League players Saido Berahino and Gaël Bigirimana missed the target from 12 yards.

Tanzania were faultless from the spot as Erasto Nyoni, Himid Mao and Gadiel Michel scored to hand the Etiene Ndayiragije coached side a ticket to next the round.

Equatorial Guinea will join Tanzania in the next phase of 2022 World Cup qualifiers after beating South Sudan 1-0 courtesy of former Midessbrough forward Emilio Nsue’s goal.

The two teams played to a 1-1 draw in the reverse fixture in Omdurman, Sudan earlier this week, with an own goal from Niko Kata cancelling out Luis Meseguer’s opener.

The Malabo result made sure that the Central African nation advanced on a 2-1 aggregate victory.

The remaining 10 first round qualifying ties will be settled on Tuesday and winners advance to the group phase where 40 countries will be divided into 10 groups.

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