CHAN 2018: Cameroon unlucky to lose as Angola and Burkina Faso draw
Congo needed a controversial penalty to beat Cameroon 1-0 while Angola and Burkina Faso had to settle for a goalless draw in the opening Group D matches at the African Nations Championship (CHAN).
Both sides had the chances to break the deadlock in Agadir with Angola enjoying plenty of possession.
Cameroon dominated their match against Congo and hit the woodwork twice before conceding a late penalty.
Junior Makiese scored from the spot.
Cameroon goalkeeper Oscar Gwot Kitali was judged to have brought down Prestige Mboungou for a Congo penalty in the 71st minute even though he seemed to get a hand to the ball.
Cameroon, coached by former Liverpool defender Rigobert Song, had the best chances in the first half with Patrick Moukoko guilty of putting the ball over the bar from six yards out and then directing a header straight at the keeper.
The dominance continued after the break and on the hour mark Song saw the ball rebound twice off the woodwork within a matter of seconds.
First Willy Namedji's shot bounced off the ground onto the bar and the ball fell to Frantz Pangop whose follow up was deflected onto the post and Congo scrambled it away.
The decisive moment of the game came when Egyptian referee Gehad Grisha decided Kitali had fouled Mboungou.
After the protestations had ended Makiesse confidently converted.
It will be a hard result for Song, who suffered a near-fatal brain aneurysm in October 2016, to take but he will be pleased with the way his side played.
One interesting footnote from the game was the participation of Pangop at the tournament for players based in their own domestic leagues after the 24-year-old signed for MLS side Minnesota United in the USA two days before the finals began.
In the earlier game Burkina Faso forward Youssouf Kabore wasted a golden opportunity nine minutes from time as he beat the goalkeeper but could not force home.
Angola enjoyed plenty of possession but also missed a good opening, as Paty headed over in the first half.
The next Group D encounters are on Saturday as Cameroon take on Angola and Burkina Faso play Congo.