It was a very bad day for Africa at the Tokyo2020 Olympics football event as Cote d I’voire and Egypt are knocked out by Spain and Brazil on Saturday.
A 5-star performance from Spain inspired by hattrick hero and super sub Rafa Mir saw Cote d’Ivoire thrashed 5-2 by their Spanish counterparts after extra time in the quarterfinals.
Eric Bailly put the CIV ahead as early as the 10th minute but a defensive blunder allowed Dani Olmo equalise for Spain on the half hour mark as the opening half ended 1-1.
After the restart, both sides searched for the next goal but it didn’t arrive until added time when Cote d’Ivoire captain Max-Alain Gradel drove home an excellent left-footed effort to restore their lead.
Egypt's #Tokyo2020 journey comes to an end at the quarter-finals 🔚🇪🇬
Waiting to see some of these young talents in Cameroon next year 👏
— CAF (@CAF_Online) July 31, 2021
That goal seemed to have won the toe for the Ivorians, but another defensive error was would be punished by Spain via Mir, a minute after he replaced Mikel Moreno following Gradel’s goal to level ten score for Spain once again.
It ended 2-2 after 90 minutes and the game would be decided by extra time and possible a penalty shootout, but Mir and Spain had other ideas.
Another defensive blunder by Bailly, who handled the ball in the box allows the VAR give Spain a penalty with Mikel Oyarzabal stepping up to convert expertly from the spot for a 3-2 lead for Spain.
The game drifted away from the Ivorians from then as Spain sealed the win courtesy of two late goals from Mir, who completed his remarkable hattrick to become the first man since Carlos Tevez in 2004 to score an Olympic hattrick.
Elsewhere, Africa’s other representative Egypt didn’t do better after falling 1-0 to defending champions champions Brazil in their round of eight tie.
Matheus Cunha was the hero after his first half strike proved to be the winner as the Samba Boys booked another semifinal spot at the Olympics.