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WC Qualification Africa

2022 World Cup Qualifiers: Algeria's Belmadi hails heroic performance away to Cameroon

11:33 EAT 26/03/2022
Djamel Belmadi & Islam Slimani, Algeria
The Desert Warriors claimed a 1-0 win over the Indomitable Lions to get a slim advantage ahead of the second leg

Algeria coach Djamel Belmadi has lauded his charges for their performance in the first leg of the 2022 World Cup qualifying play-off away to Cameroon.

In the match staged at Japoma Stadium on Friday evening, Islam Slimani scored the only goal of the match to give his team an advantage ahead of the second leg at the Mustapha Tchaker Stadium in Blida on Tuesday.

Speaking after the match, Belmadi said his charges gave their best to grab a vital win against a tough opponent in their home conditions.

"If I had to sum up my team's match in one word? Heroic. In the sense that you had to make a lot of effort, adapt to a new pattern. In difficult weather conditions, against a tough opponent who knows how to create offensive situations, we were heroic," Belmadi said as quoted by Dzfoot.

"There was danger everywhere; they [Cameroon] score a lot of goals. When they settle in our camp they become formidable but we made sure to annihilate the situations that they wanted so much."

Algeria supporters flocked Japoma Stadium to cheer on the former African champions and Belmadi appreciated their effort as well.

"Honestly, we know our supporters, we know that they do everything to be the real twelfth man. We are one of the rare nations to be able to deploy so many people on the outside. I thank them from the bottom of my heart," the 46-year-old continued.

Belmadi was, however, not happy with the yellow card shown to Ramy Bensebaini in the 77th minute. The player, seemingly, delayed a restart and referee Joshua Bondo acted.

The caution means the left-back is suspended for the second leg.

"Bensebaini received a yellow card. For me it is hard if you give him a yellow card, what should the others take?" he asked.

The 2022 World Cup will be played in Qatar from November 21 to December 18 and Africa will have five representatives, decided in this week's playoffs.