The Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana were on the brink of humiliating exits, whilst Egypt and Nigeria managed to squeeze through on a night of stunned shock and relieve after the latest round of matches at the Africa Cup of Nations 2023.

It was the hosts who was on the end of the biggest shock, after Equatorial Guinea cruised to a stunning 4-0 win in their Group A. game, which caused massive ruckshunes and dismay in Abidjan. Meanwhile the Super Eagles knew that they could do with nothing else than a win to keep them in the competition.

Despite a tensely fought first half, a goal by Emilio Nsue (pic) just short of the break ruffled the already-frazzled nerves of the home team’s fans, before further strikes in the second half by Pablo Ganet and substitute Jannick Buyla left the Elephants with only a slim chance of qualifying after finishing third. For the Ivorians, they had two goals disallowed for offside.

An own goal by Opa Sangante was enough to earn Nigeria a 1-0 win over Guinea-Bissau as they sealed their spot in the last 16 after going ahead after 36 minutes when Sangante put through his own net. It proved enough for them to finish second in Group A. and set up a meeting with the runners-up in Group C.

Group B gave two games with now decisive score lines with much still to play for as both games ended 2-2. Benchimol Tavares scored in the 45th minute to get the goalscoring going before substitute Trezeguet hauled the Pharos level and Mostafa Mohamed fired them ahead in the game’s 3rd minutes of added stoppage time.

It was Silva Teixeira Jr. who equalised in the 99th minute. For Ghana, they conceded twice in stoppage time to draw 2-2 with Mozambique as a place in the last 16 slipped through their fingers. Jordan Ayew scored a pair of penalties which looked to be sending Ghana through, but a thrilling finale saw Geny Catamo pull one back from the spot before Reinildo Mandava equalised at the death.

The two dropped points meant Egypt pipped Ghana to second place in Group B, despite also conceding a last-gasp leveller in a 2-2 draw with Cape Verde, and Chris Hughton's side are highly unlikely to qualify as one of best third-placed teams.