Cameroon had to come from behind to force a 1-1 draw with 10-man Guinea. They were champions in 2017. Algeria, who won the title in 2019, also failed to win their opening match and were held to a 1-1 stalemate by Angola. Senegal, the defending champions, began their title defense with a convincing 3-0 win over Gambia, with Lamine Camara scoring a stunning brace. They played the whole second half with 10 men.
Senegal took the lead early in the game when Pape Gueye scored assisted by Sadio Mane. In the second half, Camara extended their lead with a low shot into the far corner. He then sealed the victory with a spectacular goal in the 86th minute.
In the second game of the day, Cameroon had to come from behind to draw 1-1 with Guinea. Frank Magri equalized for Cameroon early in the second half after Guinea had taken an early lead through Mohamed Bayo. Guinea was reduced to 10 men when Francois Kamano was sent off just before halftime.
Algeria, on the other hand, took the lead in their match against Angola through Baghdad Bounedjah but had a stunning second goal disallowed for offside. Angola equalized through a penalty in the second half. Angola has failed to win any of their last nine matches at the Cup of Nations.
Ivorian Prime Minister, Robert Beugre Mambe, addressed concerns about low attendance at the opening game and promised measures to ensure full stadiums in the future. Tuesday will see the opening games in Group E, with Tunisia facing Namibia and Mali taking on South Africa.