AFCON 2017: SFG writers’ verdict
Looking back at your predictions – and with the benefit of hindsight – do you have any regrets?
Lotfi Wada: Franck Kessie’s tournament is surely my biggest regret.
Salim Said: I got it spectacularly wrong on Gabon. Their tournament was a disaster on almost every level. Also got it wrong on Ivory Coast, but I didn’t tip them to win it with emphatic confidence!
James Bennett: Pretty much everything, other than calling Ivory Coast right.
Theo Sakyi: Betting Cameroon would disappoint- it was completely logical at the time!
Sam Crocker: My Gabon prediction was obviously an absolute disaster. A really very disappointing showing from the hosts; clearly underestimated what an impact a managerial switch up would have pre-tournament. To be the first hosts to go out at the group stage since 1994 is pretty embarrassing, especially with a decent squad at their disposal.
LW: Ali Gabr
SS: Christian Bassogog. He didn’t have a single quiet game; the tournament’s most consistent attacking player.
JB: Michael Ngadeu
TS: Mbark Boussoufa. It was close between him and Charles Kabore. They both make the game look so easy.
SC: Charles Kabore (typically imperious in way he set up Burkina Faso’s offensive play with such style and grace)
Discovery of the tournament
LW: Denis Bouanga.I watched him in Ligue 2 but didn’t think that he’d be this good.
SS: Christian Bassogog
JB: Michael Ngadeu…or Christian Bassogog if you didn’t want the same answer to the previous question.
TS: Herve Koffi
SC: Herve Koffi (tournament of emerging goalkeepers, incrediblely calm and together for such a young man, one for the future)
LW: The tactical level of some teams.
SS: A good tournament. Lots of drama and unpredictability is ultimately what makes a good tournament. And it ended with a memorable final.
JB: Bance’s free kick. Rice everywhere.
TS: Vincent Aboubakar’s tournament winning goal.
SC: Aristide Bance coming into great applause, helping teammate win a free kick with a back heel, and driving in consequent free kick in an incredibly low budget and agricultural way. Just glorious.
LW: The swamps and potato fields which hosted the games.
SS: Gabon – they had the path, they had the players but they were thoroughly underwhelming. This was a major chance. It was also disappointing to see Algeria and Ivory Coast go out early.
JB: Watching Uganda struggling so badly to create anything against Egypt, and then concede in the 89th minute
TS: The hosts, Gabon, doing and playing awfully.
SC: Didn’t enjoy Morocco vs Egypt very much, though did take pleasure in two managers with such little offensive ambition going at it.
Team of the tournament
LW: Koffi, Fai, Hegazy, Bakary Kone, Oyongo, Ben Amor, Kabore, Boussoufa, Salah, Kabananga, Moukandjo.
SS: Koffi, Fathi, Mbodji, Gabr, Yacouba Coulibaly, Kabore, Siani, Boussoufa, Salah, Bassogog, Kabananga.
JB: Doing this Komphela style!
3 defenders: Ngadeu, Bakary Kone, Mbodji
2 wing-backs: Steeeeeve Yago, Mendyl
2 midfielders: Siani, Abdou Razack Traore
2 forwards: Bassogog, Kabananga
1 striker: Bance
TS: Koffi; Dirar, Hegazy, Mbodj, Oyongo, Kabore, Amor, Boussoufa, Salah, Mane, Bassogog.
SC: Koffi, El-Mohammedy, Ali Gabr, Hegazy, Coulibaly, Kabore, Siani, Salah, Moukandjo, Bassogog, Nakoulma.
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