Algeria, already qualified for the finals of the next Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon in 2022, was held to a 3-3 draw away from home at the National Heroes Stadium in Lusaka by the Chipolopolos of Zambia on Thursday in the fifth and penultimate round of matches in Group J. Nevertheless, Djamel Belmadi’s men are surfing on their beautiful unbeaten run of 23 matches in all competitions since 2018.
Algeria drew 3-3 in Zambia without any consequences. The defending African champion was not helped by the referee of the match who whistled 2 very light penalties for the Chipolopolos. In this game, it is the Algerians who will quickly put pressure on the Zambian hosts, by opening the score with Rachid Ghezzal (19′), then Islam Slimani (25′). But, Patson Daka will reduce the score for Zambia, by converting the first penalty of the game (34′). The half-time score was 2-1 in favour of Algeria.
At the end of the second half, the Zambians will throw their last energy in this battle of survival and will end up equalizing at the 52nd minute of play, thanks to a goal of Clatous Chama. But Algeria will regain the lead again in the wake of a second personal goal in this match for the Lyon striker Islam Slimani (55′).
As the game drew to a close, Comorian referee Adelaïd Ali Mohamed awarded a second contentious penalty to the Chipolopolos, which was again converted by Patson Daka (3-3, 80′). The two teams leave on this parity score, which still allows Algeria to keep its unbeaten record of 23 games in all competitions, since their last defeat on October 16, 2018 in Cotonou against the Squirrels of Benin (1-0), during the 4th day of the CAN 2019 qualifiers.
Result: Matchday 5
National Heroes Stadium (Lusaka)
Thursday 24 March 2021
Zambia v Algeria 3-3
Zambia: Patson Daka (34′ p.s., 80′ p.s.), Clatous Chama (52′)
Algeria: Rachid Ghezzal (19′), Islam Slimani (25′, 55′)
Zambia: Patson Daka (45’+1), Kabaso Chongo (90’+3)
Algeria: Youcef Belaïli (35′)
Referees Adelaïd Ali Mohamed, assisted by almadine Soulaimane and Chebli Saïd Omar (Trio Comores). 4th official: Mohamed Athoumane.
Zambia: Mwenya Chibwe – Adrian Chama, Luka Banda (31′ Lubambo Musonda), Kabaso Chongo (capped), Gamphani Lungu (62′ Moses Phiri) – Benson Sakala, Enock Mwepu, Nathan Sinkala (31′ Rodrick Kabwe) – Clatous Chama (71′ Collins Sikombe), Augustine Mulenga (71′ Spencer Sautu), Patson Daka Coach: Milutin Sredojevic (Serbia)
Algeria: Raïs Mbolhi (cap. ) – Houcine Benayada, Djamel Benlamri, Mehdi Tahrat Ayoub Abdellaoui – Adlène Guedioura (61′ Ramiz Zerrouki), Mehdi Abeid (61′ Haris Belkebla), Rachid Ghezzal (46′ El Arbi Soudani) – Youcef Belaïli, Baghdad Bounedjah (67′ Farid Boulaya), Islam Slimani (90’+1 Oussama Darfalou) Coach: Djamel Belma