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Africa Cup of Nations

Afcon 2021: 'My grandmother would have awarded penalty' – Queiroz fumes at VAR & officiating in Nigeria defeat

09:06 WAT 12/01/2022
Mohamed Salah, Egypt
The Portuguese coach saw his side bow to the three-time African champions and was left fuming after the loss in Garoua

Egypt coach Carlos Queiroz has lashed out at the "unacceptable" officiating errors which he felt cost his team against Nigeria on Tuesday.

Prior to the fixture played at the Roumde Adjia Stadium in Garoua, the Pharaohs were unbeaten in each of their last 16 group matches in the competition (12 wins and four draws) – with their last loss dating back to 2004.

That record faded into the thin air against the Super Eagles as they crumbled 1-0 with Kelechi Iheanacho scoring the only goal in the 30th minute.

Across a typically feisty encounter, the Portuguese fingered referee Bakary Gassama for poor officiating and VAR for ignoring Moses Simon’s foul on Zizo – which he claimed should have been a penalty.

“In the second half, there was a very clear penalty for us that the referee didn’t award and the VAR did not intervene,” a livid Queiroz told the media after the match.

“Maybe at that time, the VAR was not working.

“There was clearly a penalty. It wasn’t our day; it wasn’t also a good day for the refereeing. Even my grandmother would have awarded it a penalty.

“It is a disaster because there are VAR referees. It is unacceptable. Watch the incident yourself. It’s unbelievable that with all these referees, no one noticed the penalty.”

Following this result, Egypt sit at the base of Group D with no points as Sudan played out a 0-0 draw with Guinea-Bissau in the second game of the day.

To stand a chance of qualifying for the Round of 16, the North Africans must defeat Baciro Cande's Djurtus in their next outing on Saturday.

Cameroon 2021 is Egypt’s 25th appearance at the biennial African football showpiece, a record in the history of the tournament.

Also, they have won the Afcon on seven occasions - more than any other side on the continent.

Nonetheless, they have won none of the last five editions after winning each of the previous three (2006, 2008, 2010).

In Gabon 2017, they were on the brink of an eighth African title, but they bowed 2-1 to eventually winners Cameroon inside Stade de l'Amitie, Libreville.