Islam Slimani scored twice but Algeria’s Africa Cup of Nations hopes were ended after a 2-2 draw with Senegal in Franceville on Monday.
The Leicester City striker put Algeria ahead on two occasions but each time Senegal equalised, first through Papa Diop and then courtesy of Moussa Sow as they finished Group B in first place with seven points.
Like the Senegalese, Algeria were one of the pre-tournament favourites but they go out without winning a game, with Tunisia finishing in second place after their 4-2 victory against Zimbabwe in Libreville.
It is Tunisia who progress to a quarter-final against Burkina Faso in the Gabonese capital at the weekend, while Senegal already knew they would be playing Cameroon in Franceville.
“I had warned that Senegal were one of the big favourites and we showed that we could respond in difficult circumstances, which is important for the future,” said Algeria coach Georges Leekens.
“Overall it is a disappointment, but we need to use this to grow in the future,” he added as Algeria are left to focus on trying to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
“I am still sure of what I have to do. It was not a gift for me to come here but we will make it to Russia. I think my players showed they could react.”
Meanwhile, Tunisia secured their place in the quarter-finals of the Africa Cup of Nations on Monday with a 4-2 win against Zimbabwe. Tunisia only needed a draw to be sure of progressing in second place in Group B but they scored four times in the first half while Algeria could only draw 2-2 with Senegal in the night’s other game, ending any doubt about their prospects.—AFP