Morocco close to Olympic semis after win over Algeria

Morocco's Under 23 team train during the African Olympic qualifying tournament
Morocco's U23 team are nearly through to the semi-finals of the Olympic qualifying tournament, which they are hosting

Group A at the African Under-23 Championships will go down to the final games after Morocco beat Algeria 1-0 and then Senegal beat Nigeria 2-1.

All four sides still have a chance of making it through to the semi-finals in a tournament that is also the final qualifiers for the Olympic Games.

Morocco had the first chance against Algeria as Yacine Qasmi broke down the left and his cross evaded everyone but Abdelaziz's sliding effort went wide.

Algeria's best moment of the first-half came after some fancy footwork from Youcef Belaili but it ended tamely as he shot wide.

Adnane Tighadouini came on as a substitute in the 52nd minute for Morocco and made an immediate impact on the left with some promising runs but failing to find men in the box.

He then decided to take a more direct route running at the defence and firing in a low hard shot from the edge of the area that beat Rafik Mazouzi in the Algeria goal.

Algerian did manage to string some attacks together and the best chance fell to Jugurtha Hamroun but his wild shot flew over the bar as he connected with a bouncing ball in the area.

Algeria kept pressing but couldn't find a way through the Morocco defence.

Meanwhile the opening 30 minutes of Nigeria against Senegal was very poor with the ball stuck in midfield.

Senegal started to look dangerous down the right but the final crosses were poor.

In the 34th minute Senegal took the lead through Serigne Kara Mbodj as he got on the end of a long ball in to loop a header over Oladele Ajiboye in the Nigeria goal.

Three minutes before half-time Senegal doubled their lead through Abdoulaye Sane, whose initial cross was not dealt with by Nigeria. The ball fell to him again and he side-footed home at the near post.

Nigeria ended the half pushing forward but the final crosses again did not finding their targets.

Just after the break Senegal's Stephane Badji has a long range volley well saved by Ajiboye.

The Nigerians scored six minutes into the second-half as Sheffield Wednesday's Daniel Uchechi was put through and got to the ball before the Senegal keeper Ousmane Mane and slipped it under him into the net.

A few minutes later Gbolahan Salami dribbled into the box, but instead of looking for a pass he shot wildly over the bar.

Badji had two good chances, firstly he was caught between crossing or shooting and his second effort was tipped on to the bar by Ajiboye.

Substitute Joseph Lopy should have done better in the closing minutes, his weak shot from close range straight at the keeper.

The final games in Group A are on Friday as Algeria take on Nigeria in Marrakesh and Morocco play Senegal in Tangier.

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