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Sports

CAN - Crowds shun top quarter-final action

media Tunisia's Aymen Abdennour reacts during their quarter-final match against … Reuters/Louafi Larbi

Five things we learned from Sunday’s quarter finals.

  • The organisers of the competition have to find a solution whereby the continent’s showpiece event can project appeal. The quarter final between Ghana and Tunisia in Franceville was poorly attended. A stadium which can hold 20,000 people was barely a quarter full for one of the most compelling matches of the tournament.
  • That fit, top class professionals can make the same mistakes as paunchy players on public parks. Tunisia keeper, Aymen Mathlouthi, made a string of fine saves to keep his side in the game against Ghana . But a harmless cross from the right was fumbled and – unluckily for him – into the path of André Ayew who slid the ball into the net.
  • You’ve got to hit the target. When Gabon were 1-0 up and in a rampant phase in the second half, Daniel Cousin had a chance to make it 2-0. His scuffed shot grazed the post and the rest – as they say – is elimination on penalties.
    Dossier: Africa Cup of Nations 2012
  • Gabon are over reliant on Daniel Cousin. Once the self-styled big brother of the team left the field in the second half, the Panthers seemed to lose their claws.
  • Not to use the nicknames of the national football teams. It almost becomes de rigueur to follow the image the sobriquet evokes. It’s too much excitement for my analogous zone.
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