Mohammed Camara netted a late winner as Mali twice came from behind to beat Saudi Arabia 4-3 for their first 2019 FIFAU20WC win in Group E.
In a highly entertaining match at the Gdynia stadium, Camara’s 90th-minute goal proved to be the difference in a tie between two continental champions.
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— FIFA.com (@FIFAcom) May 28, 2019
It was anything but easy for the African champions who were made to work really hard for their three points by their Asian counterparts as they came from behind three times.
Saudi Arabia took a 2-0 lead inside the opening 20 minutes but a Sekou Koita goal after the half-hour mark ensure Mali reduced the deficit to 2-1 at the break.
Mali would equalise early in the second half thanks to Ibrahima Kone, but his goal only lasted nine minutes before Khalid Alghannam restored Saudi Arabia’s lead with their third goal of the evening.
Down but surely not out, Mali fought back and for the third time found themselves level this time via a stunning Boubacar Traore goal to tie the match at 3-3.
The Africans will complete the remarkable comeback when scorer of their first goal, Koita, turned provider in the 90th minute as his perfectly weighted pass found Camara free and the forward finished from close range to seal the win and three points.
Mali battle France next for a place in the round of 16 on Friday.
South Africa on the brink
South Africa is on the brink of elimination after losing their second successive match in Group F at the 2019 FIFAU20WC in Poland. The Amajitas narrowly lost 1-0 to South Korea at the Tychy Stadium with Kim Hyunwoo scoring the decisive goal.
In the other group match, Argentina booked their place in the round of 16 with a 2-0 victory over Portugal.
Up next for South Africa, they face Argentina on Friday while Portugal take on South Korea.