Didier Drogba's Ivory Coast are heading home after the substitute Hameur Bouazza earned Algeria a 3-2 extra-time win in Cabinda tonight and a place in the Africa Cup of Nations semi-finals.
The France-born Blackpool midfielder Bouazza headed home two minutes into extra-time after Algeria twice came from behind in the quarter-final between two World Cup-bound teams. The Algerians will now play either the defending champions, Egypt, or Cameroon, who meet in Benguela tomorrow.
Karim Matmour cancelled out Salomon Kalou's fourth-minute opener for Ivory Coast, one of the pre-tournament favourites, just before the break. No sooner had Abdulkader Keita fired into the top corner one minute from time to restore the lead than Algeria's Madjid Bougherra headed home to force the game into the extra 30 minutes.
Speaking to BBC, Hameur Bouazza said,
"I am really happy. We came up with what we wanted," said Algeria coach Rabah Saadane.
"I wasn't surprised by my team, but more by the decline of the Ivory Coast side. The critics said after we beat Mali (1-0) that we only scored goals from dead ball situations, well here we scored three goals from open play!"
Drogba failed to impose himself on the Algerian defence and missed a couple of clear chances. Kolo Touré, the Manchester City defender, had had the ball in the net in the dying seconds but was flagged offside.
Ivorian fans back home where very disappointed by the result of the game. Here are some snapshots from fans back home. They were left asking 'pourquoi'?...