AFCON 2019: Morocco snatch victory in Afcon opener

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Morocco opened their 2019 Africa Cup of Nations campaign with a 1-0 win over Namibia in Cairo.

The Atlas Lions put out their usual crew, while the Namibians included two Absa Premiership stars Deon Hotto and Peter Shalulile.

From a long-way out, Nabir Darir drew Namibian goalkeeper Lloyd Kazapua into a finger-tip save after 10 minutes following a decent strike.

Namibia rose up afterwards and made a strong end to the half, as the North Africans struggled to hit their stride.

Played at a slow tempo, the second half got off to a lively start as Morocco knocked fervently on the door.

This led Morocco to make a change after 57 minutes, with Soufiane Boufal replacing Mehdi Bourabia in the final third.

Boufal immediately went into the swing of things, with a low attempt that posed little issues to Kazapua though.

Namibia introduced their first change inside 64 minutes, as Marcel Papama replaced Manfred Starke, but the threats continued as Kazapua kicked Hakim Ziyech’s toe-poke back into play seven minutes later.

As the Brave Warriors looked settled for a draw, the Atlas Lions secured victory in the final minute after Itamunua Keimuine bundled Ziyech’s free-kick into his own net.