Mali Crowned Champions of U-20 AFCON

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Mali yesterday defeated Senegal 3-2 on penalties to claim their maiden Total U-20 Africa Cup of Nations title following a 1-1 stalemate after extra time in Niamey, Niger Republic.

The Aiglons held their nerves in the pulsating shootouts to hand Senegal their third successive defeat in the final.

Mamoutou Kane’s charges open the score at Stade General Seyni Kountche after 15 minutes when Boubacar Traore hammered home Hadji Drame’s delivery as Senegal found themselves behind for the first time in the tournament.

Youssouph Dabo’s Les Lionceaux replied 17 minutes from normal time through FC Metz’s Amadou Ndiaye who volleyed in the equaliser from close range to force the match to extra time and penalties.

Senegal missed their first spot kick when midfielder’s spot kick hit the post.

The young Malians converted their three consecutive penalties through Boubacar Traore, Lassana Ndiaye and Abdoulaye Diaby.

The tournament’s leading goalscorer Amadou Ndiaye missed his kick before teammate Ousseynou Niang also missed to secure Mali the title.