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Gambia appoint Saintfiet as new coach

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Africa Cup of Nations qualifying: Five big observations

Less than four months after Algeria defeated Senegal to clinch the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations title, qualifying for the 2021 edition has begun, with a series of fascinating fixtures across the continent during the international break.

There were shocks aplenty, several fine performances, and a handful of individuals who stood out above the rest. Here are Ed Dove's five big observations from the opening two rounds of Afcon qualifying.

Afcon champions remain the team to beat

Six teams took the maximum...

Cape Verde Islands down Gambia to reach WAFU Cup Plate Final

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Cape Verde beat Gambia 1-0 thanks to Paulo Norta's goal. To watch WAFU Cup of Nations, sign up for ESPN+.

A first-half rocket from Paulo Norta sent Cape Verde into the Plate Final of the 2019 WAFU Cup of Nations after beating Gambia 1-0 at the Stade Lat Dior in Thies, Senegal on Tuesday.

Gambia started strong and came close to scoring in the seventh minute when Momodou Bojang met an inch perfect left-wing cross from Muhamed Samba, but his 10-yard header was spectacularly saved by keeper Kevin Sousa.

The Cape Verde shot-stopper was at his best again in the 23rd minute, this time flinging himself across...

Gambia into WAFU Plate semis on pens shootout

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Gambia progressed into the Plate semifinals at the 2019 WAFU Cup of Nations after beating Mauritania 4-2 in a penalty shootout after their match ended goalless at the Stade Lat Dior in Thies, Senegal, on Friday.

The opening exchanges of the first half saw neither side very enterprising in attack with chances on goal few and far between.

Gambia appeared to suffer a set-back in the 19th minute when Samba Jawneh left the field injured and was replaced by Gibril Sillah, but the change seemed to...

Ghana in WAFU quarters after win over Gambia

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Joseph Esso scored in Ghana's victory over Gambia to move the Black Stars on to the Cup quarterfinals. To watch WAFU Cup of Nations, subscribe to ESPN+.

Ghana kicked off the defence of their WAFU Cup of Nations title with a slender 1-0 win over Gambia at Stade Lat Dior in Thies, Senegal, on Tuesday.

The Black Stars started strong and came close to the opening goal in the 10th minute when Joseph Esso unleashed a long-range thunderbolt, but his effort went narrowly wide of the target.

The Gambians offered very little in the way of attack in the first half with their only significant chance coming courtesy of a 22-yard free-kick in the 20th minute,...