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Olympics football: Ivory Coast through to quarters after Germany draw

10:39 AM GMT 28/07/2021
Ivory Coast vs Germany.
After drawing 1-1 against the European giants, the Africans have progressed to the last eight in Tokyo

Ivory Coast have advanced to the quarter-finals of the Tokyo Olympic Games after a 1-1 draw against Germany Miyagi Stadium in Rifu on Wednesday.

The African were the first to score in the 67th minute after their pressure for an opener saw defender Benjamin Heinrichs score into his own net.

Germany, who knew they will not qualify without a win, then levelled matters in the 73rd minute when Eduard Lowen powered home a well-taken free-kick to set up a tense finale, but the Ivorians held on to secure what proved to be a vital draw.

The African side started the game on a bad note as their player Christian Kouame was cautioned for a foul on Jordan Torunarigha with only two minutes played, and the yellow card slowed down their tempo to take the ball forward.

In the seventh minute, Germany continued to put pressure on their opponents and Marco Richter created enough space for himself after stepping past three defenders but his final effort was well gathered by goalkeeper Tape.

Ivory Coast then started to gather confidence and they created a good chance in the 22nd minute when Kouame was released in a counter-attack by Idrissa Doumbia and despite coming face-to-face with goalkeeper Florian Muller, he put the ball over the bar.

In the 40th minute, Ivory Coast came close to breaking the deadlock as Kouma rose the highest to meet a cross from Kouadio Dabila but his glancing header went inches wide.

The two teams headed into the half-time break tied at 0-0 and after the resumption, Germany made their first substitution as Maximilian Arnold paved the way for Eduard Lowen and they immediately had shouts for a penalty dismissed by the referee after a tackle by Ivory Coast defender Dabila inside the box.

In the 67th minute, Ivory Coast took the lead against the run of play after the Germany defence made a mistake from clearing the ball and it fell to striker Youssiuf Dao, who in turn tried to squeeze it past the defence and it took a deflection of Henrichs for an own goal.

However, Ivory Coast celebrations were put on hold as VAR was called upon to check if there was a possible offside but after the video team analysed the shot, the goal was given.

Germany then drew level six minutes later as Lowen scored from a free-kick, beating Ivory Coast keeper Tape, who did not make any move to save it.

Despite Germany's efforts to get a second, Ivory Coast stayed tight at the back to snatch a draw and remain unbeaten in the Group and finish second on five points, two fewer than leaders Brazil.

Germany: Florian Muller, Benjamin Henrichs, David Raum, Jordan Torunarigha, Felix Uduokhai, Nadiem Amiri, Maximilian Arnold (C),  Arne Maier, Marco Ritcher, Ragnar Achel, Max Kruse.

Ivory Coast: Tape, Ismael Diallo,  Kouadio Dabila, Eric Bailly, Willfried Singo, Abdul Keita, Idrissa Doumbia, Max Gradel (C), Franck Kessie, Christian Kouame, Youssiuf Dao.