The Fiver: the Comoros and an African Cup of Nations turned upside down by the ages | Soccer

THE COMOROS FEEL THE NOISE

Two weeks ago, the Fivers had never heard of Comoros, which we have since learned is Africa’s fourth smallest nation. And while our ignorance may seem a bit condescending, the world’s most daily football email would like to assure the approximately 850,000 inhabitants of this four-island archipelago that our ignorance is entirely due to a school geography curriculum that was more focused on the excruciating minutiae of what constitutes a truncated spur, than anything as useful as the names and locations of all the countries in the world.

Nicknamed “Cloud Coup Coup Land” in some circles, due to the twenty or so heads of state who have been ousted from office since its declaration of independence from France in 1975, the Comoros staged one of the most seismic and daring bloodless state in international football. history on Tuesday, knocking out four-time world champions Ghana from the Africa Cup of Nations. The Roumdé Adjia stadium in Garoua was the location of a thriller that ended with the brave Coelacanthes – a team of minnows who take their nickname from a relatively massive fish that can dislocate its mouth to devour very large prey – performing an impressive giant kill of their own.

With big stars such as Thomas Partey, Daniel Amartey and the Ayew brothers in their roster, Ghana were expected to qualify for the knockout stages despite a slow start in Group C. unfolded quickly. downhill they were crippled by the early double whammy of losing a goal and losing André Ayew to what looked like a mildly harsh red card. Shortly after the hour mark, the Comoros took the deficit to two.

Despite Ghana rallying to level the scores 13 minutes from time, the side ranked 132nd in the world by Fifa delivered the knockout blow in the 85th minute, resulting in scenes of delight in the Comoros dressing room. That jubilation was nothing compared to that shown at the home of Mikel Arteta and various Arsenal fans, who can now look forward to finding Partey at their side this weekend, having not missed a single Premier League game during his absence.

“It’s something special – this win is historic,” said Ahmed Mogni, who scored twice for Comoros. “When we open the history books in the next couple of years it’s going to be all those players who will be inside. It’s very important for me and for my team because we’ve shown we have the quality to compete with the great African nations.Furthermore, this victory is very important for us because we continue to believe and hope that we can pass this group stage for the next round.

While Comoros’ hopes of qualifying for the Afcon Round of 16 as one of the best third group teams are extremely slim with three groups yet to be determined, anyone with a passing interest in world football will pray to make it happen. A country that until recently was completely unknown to your underdog-loving Fiver is now represented by our favorite African football team.

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“The entire country is extremely disappointed with the Black Stars’ abysmal performance and premature exit from the Africa Cup of Nations, and we share the sentiment of the nation” – Ghana Ministry of Youth and Sports offers a damning verdict on the team’s efforts at CAN.

LIVE ON A GREAT WEBSITE

Even more Afcon fun! Join Paul Doyle for live updates from Egypt 1-0 Sudan (19:00 GMT). And stick around for the Premier League action as Michael Butler guides you through Brentford 2-2 Manchester United (8pm).

FIVE LETTERS

“Last Sunday I took my boy to his first local non-league game and it turned out to be a giant roller coaster. I thought some of your readers might like to share our story” – Rob Wright.

“With Sead Kolasinac and Pablo Marí leaving Arsenal, are the club developing a new strategy to keep their squad so thin they won’t have to play games? That should at least earn them an honorable mention in the fight Stop Soccer” – Hanford Woods.

“Regarding Stephen Rea’s letter regarding Everton’s next manager, surely he (more than anyone) would realize that any appointment could only lead to The Crying Game? – Bruce Bradley [and others].

“The best [Tuesday’s Fiver] may look like a high-end cooked meal in England, but with a winning Bundesliga player, surely it should be the Wurst. I will see myself coming out” – Christopher Smith.

“Re: The problems at Goodison Park and Downing Street. The solution seems obvious: Manchester United send Marcus Rashford to No.10 on loan, Everton bring in Wayne Rooney as their new manager, and the Tories pay Derby £20m to appoint Boris Johnson on an interim basis’ – Peter Rehwaldt.

Send your letters to [email protected] And you can always tweet The Fiver via @guardian_sport. Today’s winner of our prizeless letter of the day is… Christopher Smith.

NEWS, BITS AND BOBS

Peter Robinson, the former Liverpool secretary who was instrumental in the club’s rise, has died aged 86. “Sad news indeed, a special man has left us,” Dietmar Hamann wrote on Twitter. “LFC wouldn’t be where it is now without him. He will be greatly missed.

Peter Robinson (right) alongside Bill Shankly and Bob Paisley at the signing of Frank Worthington. Photography: Trinity Mirror/Mirrorpix/Alamy

Brighton have warned fans they face indefinite bans and further police action if they enter the pitch, following incidents during the club’s recent home games against Crystal Palace and Chelsea.

After their unpredictable 1-1 draw at the Amex, the Chelsea players enjoy a break. “We need to disconnect, that’s my feeling,” sighs Tommy T. If he’s not careful, they might disconnect soon.

Mikel Arteta is furious at the reaction to Arsenal’s request to postpone Sunday’s trip to Tottenham. “We postpone a game for all the right reasons, believe me, and we get these reactions? yelled the Gunners manager.

Everton have asked Duncan Ferguson to step in as caretaker manager. The Toffees will take their time in appointing a new permanent head coach after the seemingly unpredictable sacking of Rafa Benítez.

Ralf Rangnick has endeared himself to Manchester United fans even more by suggesting Paul Pogba could play better now that there are potential suitors to impress. “He’ll be very motivated,” Rangnick cheered, “and why shouldn’t I play him?”

Newcastle continue to carry the January transfer window and are currently waving £30m under Sevilla’s noses in a bid to buy Brazilian centre-back Diego Carlos.

Dani Alves has a simple solution to solve Barcelona’s malaise: buy Lionel Messi. “Messi is the best player in the history of football,” drooled Alves. “It would be very good if he finished his career here… the club could take care of that.”

Allow him to be Frank: Brentford manager Thomas is open to a potential transfer for Christian Eriksen. “If the players meet the no d!ckheads criteria, they can play for us,” the Dane said, a motto that has served the Bees well since 2019.

WANT EVEN MORE?

Bruno Lage’s appointment at Wolves didn’t look like an inspired choice, but he has brought Wolves back into the European race, writes Ben McAleer.

Yell Lage, Lage, Lage.
Yell Lage, Lage, Lage. Photograph: Peter Powell/EPA

In-match supporters and online fans don’t often agree, but perhaps they can both agree that their clubs should listen more, Paul MacInnes muses.

CHE v CHF, Clyde v er, Clyde and other scorebox similarities, in this week’s knowledge.

Will Newcastle splash the cash to uproot half of Atalanta’s squad from Tyneside? [They’ve had worse ideas – Fiver Ed] More in today’s Rumor Mill.

Our men’s and women’s transfer window interactives got a boost in January.

And if that’s your thing…you can follow Big Website on Big Social FaceSpace. And INSTACHAT TOO!

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