Musa Barrow Scores Late Penalty To Secure Point For Gambia Against Mali


By Momodou Jarju

Bologna and Gambian magician Musa Barrow scored a late penalty to secure the Scorpions a deserved point in what was a top table clash in Group F of the 2021 Afcon finals held in Cameroon.  

Played at Limbe Stadium on Sunday afternoon, Video Assistant Referee (VAR) was put to task twice which proved to be the deciding factor for the 1-1 draw.

Mali’s Ibrahima Kone scored from the penalty spot in 79th minute, following a push meted out to the Man of the Match award winner Yves Bissouma by Scorpions’ Ebou Adams in the penalty box.

Barrow’s goal in the 90th minute of the game after Bissouma got penalised for handball. His goal could become a crucial point for the tiny West Africa nation to qualify to the second round of the continental flagship.

Mali dominated possession with 69% of the ball, while Gambia had 31%. Both teams came into the game after two identical 1-0 victories in their opening matches last Wednesday.

Despite Mali’s dominance, especially in the first half, Tom Saintfiet’s Scorpions were the closest to opening the scoreline. Barrow was the first to hit the crossbar with a powerful strike- a free-kick about 30 yards out. Last match goal scorer Ablie Jallow had his curled free-kick beat Mali’s shot-stopper Ibrahim Mounkoro and hit the bar.   

It’s a debut dream for the Scorpions who are enjoying themselves in a maiden appearance at the Afcon finals.  The Scorpions, who are lowest-ranked side in the tournament, defeated Mauritania by a goal to nil courtesy of Ablie Jallow’s strike in the first half of the match.

Both The Gambia and Mali now share identical 4 points following the draw and are in the brink of registering themselves in the last 16 of the Afcon finals.

The Scorpions will face Tunisia in their final Group F game on Thursday, while Mali will take on Mauritania. Both matches will be played at 7 pm.