Mouez Hassen

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Wacky extra time own-goal sends Senegal into Africa Cup of Nations final

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Each side saved a penalty in the second half of the Africa Cup of Nations semifinal match between the top two FIFA-ranked teams in the competition, but Senegal got around a wasteful performance up front thanks to a wild stroke of luck.

With the game 0-0 after 90 minutes, the key moment came in extra time as Senegal swung a free-kick into the box, and Tunisia goalkeeper Mouez Hassen came flying out for the punch. With no Senegalese players in sight, is clear came off the head of Tunisian defender Dylan Bronn and deflected into the back of the net.

The goal made right for Senegal a host of other missed opportunities, including a saved penalty off the foot of Henri Saivet in the 80th minute that would have broken the scoreless deadlock.

There were a total of 26 efforts on net between the two sides in the match, but only three total on target. Senegal hit the post in the 30th minute on what was close to a sensational goal by Youssouf Sabaly who cut in from the left and unleashed a wonderful curler that struck the top-right corner of the bar. They came close again in the 38th minute as Sadio Mane got through the back line and rounded the goalkeeper, but couldn’t get his shot on net as his touch took him wide right at a tight angle.

Tunisia will also rue a failed penalty attempt, with Ferjani Sassi’s weak effort saved comfortably in the 75th minute by Alfred Gomis after Kalidou Koulibaly handled a shot in the box.

Senegal makes the Africa Cup of Nations final for just the second time in its country’s history after reaching in 2002 and falling to Samuel Eto'o‘s Cameroon on penalties. They will play the winner of Algeria and Nigeria in the final on Friday.

Kane scores early and late, England narrowly top Tunisia

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England’s 2018 World Cup debut began brilliantly, then appeared headed for a disappointingly familiar outcome, but was ultimately saved by Harry Kane who scored both goals in the Three Lions’ 2-1 victory over Tunisia in Volgograd on Monday.

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England came sprinting out of the starting blocks — so quickly they nearly took flight — and taking an early lead through Harry Kane in the 11th minute (WATCH HERE). John Stones‘ header was spectacularly saved by Mouez Hassen, but Kane was in the right place at the right time and swept home the rebound for his first World Cup goal (on his World Cup debut).

The opening half-hour was all England, with the likes of Dele Alli, Jesse Lingard and Raheem Sterling cutting through the Tunisian midfield and defense with very little resistance and creating a half-dozen golden scoring chances. Unfortunately for Gareth Southgate‘s side, they couldn’t capitalize, and they were made to pay for it.

Kyle Walker caught Fakhreddine Ben Youssef with a raised arm as an innocuous cross came into the box, prompting referee Wilmar Roldan to blow his whistle and point to the penalty spot immediately. Ferjani Sassi stepped up and converted, just out of reach of Jordan Pickford, who perhaps got a fingertip on the ball (WATCH HERE), to make it 1-1 and negate an otherwise dominant first-half performance by England. It would be Tunisia’s only shot on goal for the game.

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England’s best chance to re-establish a lead came during a six-yard-box scramble just seconds before halftime. Alli’s header hit the crossbar and Stones badly scuffed — nearly whiffed — on the follow-up. Kane was dragged to the ground during the rest of the commotion, to no interest of Roldan.

It took far longer than anyone back home in England would have liked, but Kane grabbed the winner in the 91st minute, heading home from acres of space at the back post. Jordan Henderson got the first crack at heading the corner kick, but it was blocked and bound high into the air. Somehow, some way, Kane was unmarked and snuck his redirect just inside the post.

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Up next for England is a meeting with Panama on Sunday, a day after Tunisia take on Belgium, who thrashed the Panamanians, 3-0, on Monday.

VIDEO: Captain Kane puts England on the board early

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It may be the easiest goal-scoring opportunity Harry Kane‘s ever had in an international competition, and he finished it as easy as you’d like.

Kane side-footed home after Tunisia goalkeeper Mouez Hassen made a terrific save on John Stone’s header off a corner, but the save was directed right into a wide-open Kane who was standing ready inside the six yard box. The 11th minute goal will surely settle some of the Three Lions’ nerves as they open their World Cup bid in Russia.

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