Didier Drogba was again among
the goals as the Ivory Coast led a list of former finalists in a
winning start to World Cup qualification but new African
champions Zambia lost their opening game on the road to Brazil.
There was also a setback for Morocco, whose coach Eric
Gerets' job is now under severe threat after a 1-1 draw away at
Drogba and his Chelsea team-mate Salomon Kalou scored for
the Ivory Coast as they beat Tanzania 2-0 at home less than a
week after changing their coach.
It was the first game for the pair since the Champions
League final against Bayern Munich on May 19 and a winning debut
for new Ivorian coach Sabir Lamouchi, whose surprise appointment
on Monday had been widely criticised.
Algeria, Cameroon, Senegal and Tunisia also triumphed on
Saturday as 11 matches were played at the start of the group
phase. It followed two matches on Friday and there will be seven
more on Sunday.
Both Senegal and Tunisia came from behind to win 3-1 at home
in their respective group games.
Senegal overcame Liberia in Dakar while Tunisia beat
Equatorial Guinea in Monastir, where a few thousand were allowed
to watch the game after months of barring spectators from
football in the north African country because of security
Cameroon, who have been to an African record six World Cups,
needed a second half penalty from Eric Choupo Moting in an
unconvincing win over the Democratic Republic of Congo in
Striker El Arabi Soudani scored twice as Algeria had a
routine 4-0 triumph over Rwanda in Blida.
Zambia lost their first competitive game since February's
Africa Cup of Nations success as Sudan beat them 2-0 in Khartoum.
Second half goals from Mohamed Tahir and Seif Masawi brought
the Zambians back to earth with a sudden jolt and makes next
Saturday's home match against Ghana vital for the continent's
The Central African Republic recorded a first ever World Cup
qualifying win with a 2-0 home triumph over Botswana in Bangui
but Burkina Faso and Kenya dropped points with home draws.
There will be another round of qualifiers next weekend with
all 40 countries in the group phase involved.
Borussia Dortmund's Mario Gotze ruled out of Champions League final against Bayern Munich
Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini will leave the La Liga club at the end of the current season
Stoke City and manager Tony Pulis part company by mutual agreement after seven years
Andy Carroll pulls out of England's friendly internationals against Ireland and Brazil
Ten years on, the legends speak to FFT
Your questions answered by an A to Z of legends
He's here, he's there, he's...
The cost of Premier League away travel
Nike CR7 IX for you
FourFourTwo is brought to you by Haymarket Consumer Media & FourFourTwo is part of Haymarket Sport
| International Licensing | © Haymarket Media Group 2010