Tuesday 24 April 2018

Mourning Aubameyang missing as Gabon lose on penalties

Mourning Aubameyang missing as Gabon lose on penalties
(AFP (eng) 03/23/18)
Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Grieving Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was missing as Gabon lost 4-2 on penalties to hosts Thailand on Thursday after a 0-0 draw in a Bangkok tournament semi-final.

The 28-year-old recent signing from Borussia Dortmund withdrew from the "Panthers" squad at the last minute after his grandmother died in Spain.

In a moving social media tribute, 2015 African Footballer of the Year Aubameyang said: "You gave me so much love, you learned me so many things.

"I speak Spanish because of you. I'm proud to be your little son. One last Kiss to tell you goodbye."

Gabon also lacked defender Bruno Ecuele Manga and winger Denis Bouanga, who preferred to concentrate on club careers in Europe.

The central Africans made a bad start to the shootout before a 25,000 crowd with the Thai goalkeeper saving their first two penalties.

Thailand are coached by Serb Milovan Rajevac, who guided Ghana to the 2010 World Cup quarter-finals in South Africa.

Gabon will play the United Arab Emirates on Sunday for third place before Thailand meet Slovakia in the final.

Algeria is not a happy hunting ground for Tanzania, whose latest visit resulted in a 4-1 friendly defeat in Algiers.

The last time Tanzania played in the north African country, they were humiliated 7-0 in a 2018 World Cup qualifier in Blida.

After conceding an early goal, Tanzania levelled through Shiza Kichuya only to trail 2-1 at half-time when Shomari Kapombe conceded an own-goal.

Carl Medjani put Algeria two goals ahead and Baghdad Bounedjah scored his second of the match to complete a convincing victory.

Cyrille Bayala and Aristide Bance netted within three minutes during the first half to give Burkina Faso a 2-0 win over Guinea-Bissau in France.

Kevin Bru from English second-tier club Ipswich Town scored after 18 minutes as Mauritius won 1-0 in Macau.

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